November5 begins to take shape

After the presidential campaign ended, Ralph Nader’s campaign launched a website called november5.org. It had a video promising that the Nader camaign would be transformed. It would turn into a citizen lobbying effort, with volunteers in every congressional district in the country, all moving forward progressive ideals.

Now, a letter has been sent to those who signed up on november5.org and it has also been posted on the website. It covers a few of the specifics of the November 5 effort, along with the issue that it will push for (which was decided in a previously covered poll of Nader supporters):

To Our Supporters,

Several of us from the Nader for President 2008 campaign had decided to channel our efforts toward one big goal, but we lacked a major focus. Recently, results of a survey done by the campaign came back. Top issue? Adopt single payer health care. It’s not the only issue people care about, obviously. But, to turn this country around it’s clear that we need to address our own pain now.

Our big goal for the next Congress will be to drive for national health insurance to cover privately-delivered healthcare for all Americans.

We’re far from alone in this. The array and scope of the groups and their allies supporting national health insurance is impressive. But we are not reinventing the wheel, either. As long as you want to build a lasting organization that will get Congress to focus on people’s needs — not those of big business — November5 can be the place to do it.

Here in the United States, we have excellent private health care. So why are nearly 100 million of our citizens uninsured or underinsured? You already know why: profit-driven private insurance companies. Taken together, they make the Pentagon look streamlined.

Not only that, but consider over 18,000 dead and hundreds of thousands getting sicker every year specifically because their health insurance is inadequate — or non-existent.

The way to fix health care is to cut private insurance companies out of the basic health care picture, while keeping our system of private delivery. This is how Medicare came into being in the 1960s. It now covers all Americans over 65.

If we succeed in creating a system of “Medicare for All,” we will help businesses and other organizations, independent contractors, veterans, people with pre-existing conditions, students — all of us. If we get this done, it will revolutionize all of our lives for the better. We’ll be able to focus on everything else that we want to accomplish for our communities, and our nation.

Passing national health insurance will be difficult, but it is achievable.

General Plan

  1. Huge amounts of leg work have been done on this issue. H.R. 676, the legislation that supporters of national health insurance have introduced, had 93 original co-sponsors in the House. That number will probably increase as the new Congress comes into session. The first task now facing all supporters of the bill will be to make a new tally of co-sponsors and supporters in the next Congress.
  2. We will be up against alternatives to “reform” health care, such as the plan promoted by Senator Max Baucus. They simply extend the status quo — and the damage. They would expand the profits of the private insurance companies, and therefore cannot check the spiraling inflation generated by these companies, and the broken system they inhabit. So, right away, we have to draw a sharp line between what we want, and bad compromises.
  3. Remember, to pass the House, we will need roughly another 120 votes. That means that we will have to go for a margin, to have around 140 votes in addition to the co-sponsors. Here is where our district-level organizations will have to go to work to pick up votes.
  4. We will need sponsors of the legislation in the Senate. Those do not yet exist. This is a critical early step that we hope to help other groups active on H.R. 676 to take.
  5. November5 is non-partisan. We cannot be bound by the notion that Republicans will not buy into national health insurance. It maintains private delivery of health care and will expand choice of doctor, creating conditions for greater innovation and competition — not less.
  6. We will need to build fast. This effort will work only if it moves deeply into communities, where members of Congress get their votes. We are currently designing a structure that will allow people to begin organizing independently, district by district, around our current goal — without having to wait for plans from above.

Specific Steps

  1. Inform yourself and others by reading:
  2. Write a letter — not an email — in your own words to your member of Congress stating that you’d like their commitment to vote for H.R. 676. If your member of Congress is a co-sponsor of the bill, express your support for that stand. Email a copy to us, if you would, with the words “Letter to My Congressperson” in the subject line.
  3. President-elect Obama has asked for volunteers around the country to host discussion groups on the health care issue during the last half of December. Attend a discussion in your area and make the argument for single payer. Click here for more information.

Soon, we’ll be raising money online to build the November5 movement. November5.org will not be a passive website, it will be a place where each Congressional district will be represented by the people of that district. You’ll be able to login and see the latest on your Congressional representative, plan with others events that make sense to you for promoting H.R. 676, and organize for meeting with your member of Congress.

If the model works, we’ll be able to tackle other issues. For now, let’s focus in, and get November5 built. The bell has rung — and we are in a struggle that we can win, if we all dig deep.

The politicians who want to nibble around the edges of the rolling disaster that is our health care system may have industry on their side, but we have the best plan. Many highly-qualified doctors, economists, and legislators have put enormous work into it, we just have to stand up, be counted and gather others with us to do the same.

We look forward to the rewarding work ahead.

The November5 Team

7 thoughts on “November5 begins to take shape

  1. Catholic Trotskyist

    I rejoice in the greatness of God my savior, my soul magnifies the Lord, I protest the iniquities of the pig naderites, and cast them down upon the name of the Lord. Can’t stop, won’t stop, pigs proselytism Grover Cleveland, Mozart in the jungles, cast down upon the wrath of the Lord. O You fools, you thought I had abandoned this holy site, but no, I have been praying for our holy child Milorad Blagojevich, the king of holy corruption, the true embodiment of the Serbian Orthodox branch of Catholic Trotskyism, may the Lord and the souls of Trotsky, Bukharin, Krivitsky, etc, bless and protect him, amen.

  2. Catholic Trotskyist

    Prairie Green, Prairie Green, come forth O Lord, the Joy to the World is come, you can’t stop the greatness of Milorad Rod Blagojevich and the God’s Own movement, Catholic Trotskyism, imagine the jungles teaming with those who love economic freedom, soon to be cast down upon by the Obama/Blagojevich/Huckabee revolution, soon even the pope will be talking about the rise of the Catholic Trotskyist movement and its restoration of the church, I am greatest theologian since Thomas Aquinas= and if Dante were alive he would be putting Nader in the sixth circle. Pray the laudes and vespers, read John Courtney Murray, can’t stop, won’t stop, all for one and one for all, amen.

  3. Michael H. Wilson

    C.T. writes: “can’t stop, won’t stop,”.

    MW ask isn’t that the title of a book on the history of hip hop?

  4. Catholic Trotskyist

    I have never heard of this book, but Roza Clemente’s interest in hip hop is probably infecting my brain cells. COME BUY MY NICE FRESH IVY, Ralph Nader’s pathetic movement will be like Mozart in the New York Jungle, pray the Vespers, today is the third Sunday of Advent, I feel like Marc Zborowski on marajuana, amen.

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