State Legislators Launch Effort to Push HR 676

A group of state legislators has initiated a nationwide effort to publish an Appeal to President Obama and members of the 111th Congress to support HR 676, single payer healthcare legislation introduced in Congress by Representative John Conyers, Jr. and 75 co-sponsors.

Twenty four state legislators, from 16 states, have sent a copy of the Appeal to all 7,500 state legislators in the United States asking them to add their names to The Appeal which will be published in Roll Call, a widely read Capitol Hill publication.

The legislators, in their letter, cite the growing “economic crisis” and “badly strained” state budgets as the reason why they are asking “The U.S. Congress … to heal our hemorrhaging state budgets while bringing comprehensive quality health care to all our people, by passing HR 676….”

Co-conveners of the campaign are State Senator Jim Ferlo of Pittsburgh and Assemblyman Richard Gottfried of New York. Senators and representatives from Colorado, Georgia, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin also signed the letter.

Kay Tillow, Coordinator of the All Unions Committee for Single Payer Health Care—HR 676, welcomed the effort by these state legislators and urged everyone to contact their own state senator and representative and ask them to sign the Appeal.

“State legislators,” Tillow said, “are caught in a vice of escalating healthcare costs, driven largely by the for-profit insurance industry and declining revenues. Without a national single payer system, state budgets will continue in crisis and health needs will not be met.”

The ‘Dear Colleague” letter, the ‘Appeal’ and other materials can be found at: