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Green Party of California

Green Party of California applauds passage of universal health care bill in Senate; Urges Assembly, Governor to ignore special interests

GREEN PARTY OF CALIFORNIA NEWS RELEASE
For immediate release: Tuesday, June 1, 2005

Contacts:
Cres Vellucci, State Press Office, 916-996-1970,
Beth Moore Haines, GPCA Spokesperson, 530-277-0610,
Sara Amir, GPCA Spokesperson, 310-270-7106,

SACRAMENTO (June 1, 2005) The Green Party of California today urged the state Assembly and governor to ignore the influence of special interests, and approve legislation to create a universal health care system to provide health care coverage for all Californians.

SB840, authored by Sen. Sheila Kuehl (D-Los Angeles) was passed in the upper house late Tuesday on a 24-14 vote and now moves to the Assembly.

The only question now, said a GPCA spokesperson, is whether the Assembly and governor have enough compassion to follow the Senate's vote.

"As Greens, and as Californians, we have urged for many years that the state adopt such a measure to relieve our citizens of the worry over whether they will receive the medical treatment they deserve as a right," said Larry Cafiero, GPCA liaison to the Secretary of State's office.

"This measure will give everyone whether they are rich, or poor, working or unemployed the same coverage," added Cafiero, noting that recent statistics indicate thousands of Americans without insurance die every year because they do not have adequate insurance.

"We can only now hope that members of the Assembly will vote for what is best for all citizens, not just the special interests who want this bill to die, and that the governor will act similarly to make this law," said Erika McDonald, spokesperson for the San Francisco Green Party.

An analysis from the independent Lewin Group concluded Sen. Kuehl's plan would afford residents comprehensive, affordable insurance with medical, dental, vision, surgical and prescription drug coverage and still save California $8 billion the first year and $344 billion over 10 years.

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The Green Party of California
http://www.cagreens.org
P.O. Box 2828, Sacramento, CA 95812
Phone: (916) 448-3437
gpca@greens.org