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Sunday, September 29, 2013
Though I do not consider myself partisan, recent actions by the Republican statewide ticket this year leave little room for nuance.
Barbara O’Shields, in her Sept. 13 letter (“Vote for Jackson for lieutenant governor”), states that E.W. Jackson will “reduce the cost of health care by stopping Obamacare,” a sentiment echoed by the candidate.
That refusing to implement the Affordable Care Act would reduce health care costs is an unfortunately pervasive misconception, one at odds with Republican ideology.
Of relevance to Virginia specifically is Medicaid expansion under the ACA. Medical debt is the leading cause for bankruptcy; expanding coverage will only aid in preventing individual debt. Furthermore, expansion will result in long-term savings for Virginia, according to studies by the Lewin Group and Urban Institute.
We need not appeal solely to statistics: It’s also a matter of common sense. Expanding access to care ultimately improves individual health outcomes (and reduces the need for medical intervention over one’s lifetime).
This is sound fiscal policy. Republican gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli and Jackson represent a threat to Virginia’s most disempowered citizens and to its reputation as a fiscally well-managed state. Virginia voters would be advised to reject these candidates on Nov. 5.
AARON M. HORST
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