Saturday, December 01, 2007

Heartland Presidential Forum: Barack Obama

As I posted earlier, I was unable to attend the Heartland Presidential Forum due to the winter weather that is hitting the area. So I am sitting comfortably at home and will be blogging from my couch.

Barack Obama is introduced and you can tell there is a large crowd from Illinois in attendance from the loud applause he received. Obama highlights his work as an organizer in Chicago and working with groups like the ones that organized this forum.

The first group of people includes a woman who lost her health insurance and was lucky to have SCHIP to help her daughter who has a rare eye disease and would go blind without medical care. The question is about health care. Government has a role to play to make sure people have a chance to live out their dreams. People don't expect government to solve all their problems. He talks about the need to lower health care costs and not allowing people with pre-existing conditions be denied coverage.

Obama is asked if we should expand Medicaid and Medicare instead of providing tax dollars to insurance companies. Obama says if he was designing a system from scratch, he would move to a single-payer system. However, we have to deal with the system we are in. He dicusses how his program helps cover more people. He will expand SCHIP and other government programs, negotiate with drug companies, and will allow people to enter a government program if they feel the market isn't working for them.

The next question comes from people with concerns about the rising number of home foreclosures. We have lost balance in our economy. We have CEO's making more in 10 minutes than most people here make in on year. Part of the reason is we have special interests in Washington who control the agenda. We must restore fairness in our tax system by repealing Bush's tax cuts, close loopholes for companies that ship job overseas and provide tax relief by making an exemption of the first $15,000 on their income tax.

The final question is about predatory lending and what Obama would do to help families and neighborhoods. Obama says part of the reason we are in this mess is because we haven't had a government that provided regulations on these lenders. He mentions a bill he has introduced in the Senate.

Here is more information
on Obama's appearance.


The Real Sporer said...

So what's the deal with Ford and Campos rigging the crowd for Hillary tonight? Is she even going to be there?

Fox has been headlining it all day but I keep missing the top of the hour news stories so I've missed the update.

Also, is the B&B debate going to be broadcast anywhere? The weather has also driven the night blind TRS indoors tonight.

noneed4thneed said...

Chase Martyn of Iowa Independent has a post about that at the Huffington Post ( ).

Not sure if Hillary is going to make it to the debate. I bet it depends if the Des Moines airport opens or if she'd be able to fly into Cedar Rapids and then drive to Des Moines.

The Real Sporer said...

Mediacom 22 has it on TV tonight.

noneed4thneed said...

Thanks for pointing that out. It also looks like Hillary (and Bill) made it to the event. For some reason Dan Rather thought he needed to point out that Bill won't be appearing on stage.