Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Specter, Sestak and health care change

Sunday's health reform confab with U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and U.S. Senator Arlen Specter at the U.S. Constitution Center was right out of the 700 level of Veteran's Stadium. Booing, shouting, cheering. I didn't hear too many expletives, but it was nasty. If anything, it shows that changes to the health care system have many people concerned, to put it mildly. Potential Specter rival, U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak had his taste of it on Saturday. Tomorrow, Sestak, who has not officially declared a run against Specter, promises a major campaign announcement. Hmmm. Wonder what that will be.

Specter, Sestak and health care change

Sunday's health reform confab with U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and U.S. Senator Arlen Specter at the U.S. Constitution Center was right out of the 700 level of Veteran's Stadium. Booing, shouting, cheering. I didn't hear too many expletives, but it was nasty. If anything, it shows that changes to the health care system have many people concerned, to put it mildly. Potential Specter rival, U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak had his taste of it on Saturday. 

Tomorrow, Sestak, who has not officially declared a run against Specter, promises a major campaign announcement. Hmmm. Wonder what that will be. On Saturday, he assembled a plethora of panelists who could offer assistance to the many unemployed and struggling families in his district, which includes parts of Delaware, Chester and Montgomery counties.

Sestak said he thinks he and his fellow Democrats haven't done a good enough job selling health care changes to the protesters who showed up at his event at Interboro High School on Saturday.

The way he sees it, health insurance, as it is, has just become too big a burden. Workers lose their coverage when they lose their jobs. That shouldn't happen. Workers take jobs that they don't want so they can get health insurance. That means that they may be not utilizing their talents fully. Small businesses lose talented employees to competitors who offer health insurance. Meanwhile, taxpayers are paying the price when the uninsured show up in emergency rooms. Whether Sestak can help Obama sell the plan remains to be seen.

But there is no doubt that health care coverage is a huge issue for the unemployed.

About this blog

Jobbing covers the workplace – employment, unemployment, management, unions, legal issues, labor economics, benefits, work-life balance, workforce development, trends and profiles.

Jane M. Von Bergen writes about workplace issues for the Inquirer.

Married to a photographer she met at her college newspaper, Von Bergen has been a reporter since fourth grade, covering education, government, retailing, courts, marketing and business. “I love the specific detail that tells the story,” she says.

Reach Jane M. at jvonbergen@phillynews.com.

Jane M. Von Bergen Inquirer Staff Writer
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