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February 28, 2006

Demand Travaglini Step Down!

by at 11:26 am.

Are you hopping mad? You should be. The health of your friends and neighbors (and maybe yourself) just got sold down the river by Senate President Travaglini and his people.

You probably read about the conference committee which was to resolve the House (the good) and Senate (the bad) version of the bill. I wanted to write about the death of decent health care reform earlier, and a lot of people beat me to it. But now I want to call on the blogs, and the people of Massachusetts who give a shit about their uninsured fellow citizens (of which I was one until last November), to tell Travaglini to step down.

He has shown, in the face of real health care reform that will help the people of this state, cowardice and lack of leadership. The polls even showed a majority in favor of the House bill; but still, Travaglini catered to his pro-business friends (odd to me, because 2/3 of businesses in the state stood to get a tax break under the now-dead House bill) and would not back down.

We will not get meaningful reform with Travaglini as the leader of the Senate. Therefore, he must be forced to resign.

Call Senator Travaglini today. Call, fax, and write him now and tell him you think he should step down. Then call, fax, and write your state senator and say you demand Travaglini leave his post as Senate President.

Senator Travaglini is an impediment to progress. Roadblocks are meant to be swept aside. Travaglini must step down.

11 Responses to “Demand Travaglini Step Down!”

  1. Mass Revolution Now! » Blog Archive » Health Care Action Time! Says:

    […] ssachusetts, Health Care, Social Policy

    While I don’t agree with Lynne in calling for Travaglini’s resignation, though I do think he has been obs […]

  2. Kristin Says:

    The Senate President did this to secure the federal funding..something..anything..has to be in place by approx. march 1st..in order to do so..he is not
    totally forgoing the other aspects..he is just focusing on passing this scaled back bill and then..once the funding is guaranteed..they can take their time
    and work out the rest of it..securing health care for everyone..and expanding medicaid..etc…

  3. Lynne Says:

    If he wasn’t so insistent on not compromising at all on the shift in tax burden, we would already have a bill in place which would do all that plus the reform. But he refused to back down, the only reason I can see being that he was listening too hard to the (retail sector WalMart type) business interests, and therefore the legislature is stuck scrambling to “patch the holes” to prevent a loss of federal dollars.

    This bill was sat on for months at the end of last year. They could have moved on it in a very timely manner. The fact they didn’t shows me that Travaglini isn’t interested in revisiting this after they fix the federal funding issue in June. Do you really think we’ll get anywhere on health care reform while he’s leader of the Senate? Even if Deval Patrick gets elected, he will be a thorn on the side of everything we try to get accomplished.

    He should have stood up and led on this issue when he had the chance. DiMasi did. Travaglini took the cheap road, and tens of thousands of Massachusetts families will continue to suffer, and more will join them.

  4. Kristin Says:

    Travaglini was against Dimasi’s proposal due to the harsh unrealistic tax that would
    be imposed on businesses…He offered many a proposals to DiMasi..and it was HE who refused
    to even consider any compromises..Travaglini was looking for a more realistic and reasonable
    plan that would prove to be successful long term ..
    Travaglini has been looking to address the health care issue for some time..DiMasi is the one
    who refuses to even consider any other bill other than his own..who’s the one taking action now
    that a dealine is looming? DiMasi refuses to even acknowledge the July 1st deadline for the Federal Funding..
    Travaglini does not believe in an unfair business tax..he was not sitting on health care legislation..he was
    constantly and consistently working on a compromise..while DiMasi was the one sitting on it.

  5. Shawn Says:

    Look at it from the big picture..

    Massachusetts offers free health care to everyone by raising taxes on businesses to pay for it.

    Ultimately, people with critical catostrophic health issues start migrating to Massachusetts.

    Businesses start moving out of the state to more tax-advantageous situations.

    The few people and small businesses left working in the state (only about 40% of the state population now) are left carrying the burden.. and they continue (thats CONTINUE) to leave the state for more reasonable tax situations themselves.

    Sorry, but a 7% hit on local businesses (your local hardware store, convenience store, restaurant) will kill many of them.

  6. Kristin Says:

    Great way to put it shawn!

  7. Wes F. in North Adams Says:

    Who let the Cato Institute in?

    Anyhoo, Kristin and Shawn, here’s one of those wide-eyed radical ideas.

    Corporations receive state charters. Maybe it’s time to exercise the idea of “You want a public charter? You gotta do one or two things in the public interest. Pay yer taxes and help us provide health care.”

    Of course, I’ve always believed that the Santa Clara cases were bad jurisprudence, and now corporations have more rights than individuals, so I am not one to weep for the “problems” of corporations.

    The best solution, obviously, is to come up with something at the national level so corporations cannot continue the odious and horrific practice of playing states/municipalities against each other in this race to the bottom. The Capitalism Über Alles mindset is destroying this country.

    Y’know, Stan Lee said it best. With great power comes great responsibility.

    WF

  8. Kristin Says:

    It’s not about corporations but small businesses..

  9. Wes F. in North Adams Says:

    No, it IS about corporations, and how they’d screw small businesses again.

    Any corporation that takes its ball and goes home to leave small businesses holding the bag should immediately have its charter revoked.

    Of course, I tend to believe that corporations specifically have elected officials write regulations so that small businesses are priced out of existence (while the corporation either has loopholes written or passes the extra cost on somewhere else).

    The sheer number of large corporations fighting the DiMasi bill tells me it’s the best one of the bunch - though it’s worth pointing out that Wal-Mart, et al will probably fight the Trav plan as well.

    WF

  10. sachem_head Says:

    On Tuesday, Lynne, I disagreed with you and thought your anger with Trav. was misplaced. But after reading in today’s Globe that the Senate passed a bill with an individual mandate tacked on, I’m not so sure. If the idea was to put forward a bare-bones bill that would secure the Federal money and ease the tension so a compromise could be reached, why attach this poison pill? That’s what I don’t understand.

  11. Lynne Says:

    Look, first, under the House bill I support, any business with 10 or under employees is exempt. So you can’t pull out the you’ll-hurt-mom-and-pop-businesses rhetoric.

    What part of “businesses doing the right thing, covering their employees, are already taxed right NOW” do people not understand?

    sachem: yes, that individual mandate (which made NO sense at all!) coupled with continuing to punish those good businesses and to keep letting the other ones get away with a competative advantage of not covering employees was why I believed Trav is no longer a relevant leader looking out for the interests of Massachusetts residents. That it stayed in the bill is just more evidence of that.

    And for those who are “aww, those poor businesses” (of over 10 employees), I’ll put it this way: WalMart and Dunkies aren’t going to go anywhere. And you know what? I wouldn’t cry if they did. They suck anyway. These sorts of bad-citizen companies hurt local business communities to the point that the damage can only be reversed by their departure. Good riddance!

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