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Thursday, December 10, 2009

An open letter to my senators

Dear Mr. Lautenberg and Mr. Menendez,
I am a 31 year old teacher who has lived in NJ my whole life. I recently got married to a woman who moved in from another state. She just graduated from college and as of yet has not found a job in her field (she's looking for something in publishing). As such, she has been covered by my health insurance since our wedding in August. As a girl, my wife had a very serious accident that caused her to lose the use of one eye, and damaged her other eye significantly (her case is so unusual she was actually written up in the New England Journal of Medicine). Because of this, she needs very special eye care. As it is right now, she's having a difficult time finding a doctor who is covered under my plan that meets her very specific needs. Now, with the state of education the way it is (which, believe me, could be a whole other email unto itself), the contract for my district is up. We've been working without a contract since the year started, and one of the key sticking points is, of course, health care. I don't know how the contract negotiations will end, but I'm terrified of the possibility of either A)losing our benefits altogether and not being able to afford health care any more, or B)losing the right to have my wife under my plan. Should either of these things happen, I don't know how we're going to pay for/cover her necessary eye appointments.

If the government had gone ahead with the public option plan, the one that THE MAJORITY OF AMERICANS WANT, this wouldn't be a worry. I would be confident that my wife will indeed be covered for the special care that she needs.

I have voted Democrat my entire adult life. It would be an understatement to say that I am extremely disappointed with the decision of Senate Democrats to take the public option off the table in negotiations for health care reform. If the American people want this, and it is something necessary to keep America up to date with the rest of the world, why in the world are we the people being denied the basic right of being taken care of?

I am a well educated, informed citizen. I cannot wrap my mind around how our government officials have played so callously with the very well being of those they have sworn to protect.

Mr. Lautenberg and Mr. Menendez, please, do all that you can to get the people the health care and the PUBLIC OPTION, that they not only want but deserve.

Thank you for your time,
Jason Flum

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