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Friday, March 19, 2010

Meghan Morris, Rep. Stephen Lynch, Healthcare Reform, and History

Legislative assistants in Congress dream of the chance to make history. That moment arrives today for Meghan Morris in Rep. Stephen Lynch's office.

Congressman Lynch is one of the few Democrats to oppose national health reform. His vote could be the decisive one, given the closeness of the vote. Will he be known as the person who tipped the balance, giving health insurance coverage to 39 million people, and banishing the "pre-existing condition" exclusion from insurance policies? Or as the one who extinguished the financial security and hope for millions of working-class people for health insurance coverage, for many more years?

Meghan, you'll soon report the count of the letters the office received, and will advise Rep. Lynch on the optics as of next week, on November 2, and in ten years. Next week, the optics of a No vote could make him the butt of late-night talk show jokes, and make him look like a disloyal black sheep, a Democrat in name only, another Democrat who snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. On Nov. 2, it won't look like much of anything, either way, for Massachusetts voters will make their decisions on other grounds. In ten years, and from then on, he'll look foolish.

The optics of a Yes vote? Next week, he'll look like one of a crowd who helped make history. On Nov. 2, it won't matter either way. In ten years, we'll all think, "He and those other Dems actually accomplished something big. We're not going back. How could we have excluded so many working class and suffering people for so long?"

Your call, Meghan. Please rise to the moment.

Advice to voters: Tell your friends in the suburban Boston towns of Brockton, Braintree, Needham, and points between to contact Meghan at Meghan.Morris@mail.house.gov or by calling Rep. Lynch's office at 617-428-2000 or 202-225-8273.

Read a story about the one-year anniversary of universal health insurance in Massachusetts.

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