Letter to Tom Perriello

Dear Representative Perriello,

As a proud long-time resident of Virginia’s 5th District and one who loudly backed your campaign and cheered your victory last November, I am somewhat disheartened by your new television ad campaign. While the ad itself is upbeat and admirable, I couldn’t help but notice it was paid for by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) and the Healthcare Leadership Council (HLC).

Are we to gather from this that your health care-related legislative decisions will be made for you by one of the more questionable (and, unfortunately, powerful) lobbying concerns in the U.S.? Is it safe to assume that you would never sponsor a single payer health care option for the American taxpayer? If this is the case, then in the future I will certainly consider a candidate who will put the people’s needs before campaign contributions.

If this is not the case – and I certainly hope it is not – then I urge you to join with Rep. John Conyers in pushing H.R. 676, The United States National Health Care Act, through the House of Representatives. If you cannot do this, then I hope you will at least help to bring the notion of comprehensive universal health care for all citizens into the discussion on health care reform.

Profit-based health care is strangling our nation at every level, from businesses that cannot afford to cover employees to individuals who cannot afford even the most basic services. It is inefficient, it is wasteful and it rewards greed in an industry whose only concern should be the welfare of its clientele. Additionally, the U.S. spends more on private profit-driven health care than any other industrialized nation – even those with full, comprehensive lifetime care, including vision, dental and mental health.

I hope you will reconsider doing the bidding of pharmaceutical lobbyists who would rather spend their money influencing Congress than on providing quality, reasonably-priced services for your actual constituents.

In a climate of money-based politics, it will not be easy, but I’ve long felt you might have the character to do what is right. Please consider it.

Thank you for your time and consideration,
Stephen D. Barling III
Charlottesville, Virginia

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4 Responses to “Letter to Tom Perriello”

  1. barndoor cowlegs Says:

    fine work my friend,
    will do the same, I know of a couple of others who will join in the letter writing as well (CCPJ this Sunday!)

  2. Well said. TP has always struck me as a reasonable and thoughtful fellow. It will be interesting to see how his stand on this issue plays out.

  3. cripsyduck Says:

    Mystery solved. At last night’s “Tom on the Town” town hall meeting, barndoor asked Perriello about single payer and the PhRMA ads. Perriello doesn’t support single payer, believing the “private sector can do a better job.” (I have serious doubts.) He said he’s probably open to the notion of states choosing single-payer if they so desire. And he talked about the TV ads. PhRMA ran the ads without consulting the congressman, hoping to get a “sweetheart deal.” Sort of a shot over the bow that Perriello described as a statement of “we can be your best friends or your worst enemies.”

    Pretty good guy, Perriello. I just strongly disagree with his faith in the private sector. If profit is your motive, then what exactly will motivate you to care for you clients? I’m not so convinced that the “government option” is going to generate enough competition to make the insurance pirates behave. They’ll just find ways to weaken the public option so it’s no competition.

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