Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

Opinion

March 15, 2013

Letter to the Editor

To the Editor:

When asked about Iowans too poor to afford health insurance, Governor Branstad talks about health care savings accounts, increasing co-pays, and people drinking at open bars at weddings.

Governor, making health care more expensive won’t help people who can’t afford it in the first place.

Iowa’s Governor has no idea what it is like to be unemployed or to work for the minimum wage.

He’s been on the state payroll almost all of his adult life. His family has never had to live without health insurance. Those are the facts.

While it’s not the Governor’s fault that he has no idea what it is like to live in poverty, it is his fault when he refuses to help Iowans who do.

I wish Governor Branstad heard the testimony I’ve heard from Iowans living without insurance. One retired Iowa teacher broke down in tears while describing her adult daughter’s life without mental health care.

Governor Branstad doesn’t know these people. They aren’t foreign business investors. They aren’t campaign contributors. And they don’t live in fancy houses on the west side of Des Moines.

But these people are still Iowans and Governor Branstad is just as much their governor as the rich investors and business people that surround him.

Let me tell you the story of one of these people, someone I know very, very well.

As a young woman in her mid-twenties, she was going through a difficult time. She was getting divorced, and she didn’t have much money.

She lived in a small Iowa town. No matter how hard she tried, the only job she could find was a part time job.

She was able to make ends meet, but just barely. After paying for rent, gas, and groceries, there was nothing left.

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