“Comprehensive health insurance is an idea whose time has come in America. There has long been a need to assure every American financial access to high quality health care. As medical costs go up, that need grows more pressing. Now, for the first time, we have not just the need but the will to get this job done. There is widespread support in the Congress and in the nation for some form of comprehensive health insurance. … Let us act sensibly. And let us act now … to assure all Americans financial access to high quality medical care.”
Do you know who said these words? President Barack Obama? No. He didn't. These words were said by President Richard M. Nixon in 1974.
His plan was not so different from what is up for vote tomorrow in the House of Representatives.
Richard Nixon, a Republican, would have approved of President Obama's plan. I was 18 years old in 1972, and I cast my first vote for president in November of that year. I voted for Richard Nixon. He was paranoid, and he screwed up, but he did get some things accomplished, including Title IX. Perhaps if Watergate had not happened, we might be celebrating 36 years of universal health care - and we would be a healthier and more productive nation because of it.