Health care vote
Re “Where to send California Republicans who backed that awful Obamacare repeal” (Editorials, May 5): Thanks to Obamacare, my health care premiums were reduced by more than 80 percent. Because I have a pre-existing condition, I wouldn’t have any coverage without Obamacare. The Affordable Care Act works for millions of Americans. With some tweaks, it can work for millions more. But repeal will mean millions of Americans, including me, will lose health care and millions more will have unaffordable increases in health care costs. How is that a fix?
Barbara Shepard, Sacramento
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As an academic who has spent the last 50 years of his life attempting to understand, explain and predict American political behavior, I have never studied or witnessed a more strategic blunder than the Republican vote on the Affordable Care Act and subsequent response.
Piling into buses to parade at the White House behind the most shallow man ever to occupy the presidency for a vote which did not pass a bill looked like a fraternity headed for spring break. The bill is truly horrid and likely never to become law. Their behavior is insulting to our nation and particularly to those who voted for them.
Russ Lindgren, Folsom
I enjoy reading about the horse race as much as any political junkie, but that’s not what the health care debate is about. It’s about lives. The Congressional Budget Office analysis of the Republican’s American Health Care Act says outlays for Social Security benefits would decrease by about $3 billion during the 2017-2026 period.
Why would Social Security benefits decrease? Because seniors would die prematurely. So while it is indeed interesting to read about how political survival is a challenge for House Republicans, a line or two might be spared for those seniors. They are not fighting for their political survival; they are fighting for their lives.
Inna Tysoe, Sacramento
The biggest winner in the killing of the Affordable Care Act will be the funeral industry.
Bruce Kennedy, Carmichael
Re “Trump signs $1 trillion spending bill, keeps government open” (sacbee.com, May 5): Kudos to Congress for providing bipartisan support for a much-needed $400 million increase in Alzheimer’s disease research funding. A recent report issued by the Alzheimer’s Association shows the growing direct cost of $259 million and other economic impacts for caring for people living with Alzheimer’s or other dementia. These new research dollars will help address this crisis and find better treatments for those who have it.
Jim Howard, Sacramento
I am a community college student nearing the end of my final semester and will be transferring to UC Santa Cruz.
I have come to the conclusion that even with my financial aid and scholarships, I will not have enough money to cover the costs of attending my dream school. And now, with the news that California public universities plan to raise tuition even higher, I have grown even more concerned.
Will I have to take out thousands of dollars in student loans to further my education? How long will I be in debt? These are concerns that I’m sure many other students attending our state’s public universities also share.
Anai Lopez, Stockton
Re “Released inmate fights order to give up teeth” (Page 3A, May 12): A released inmate was told to give back his dentures, which cost taxpayers $2,688, and he is fighting to keep them. Are you kidding me? Hard-working, law-abiding people can’t afford these. What is wrong with this picture and our system and the mindless judges and lawyers who allow this? Prisoners should go in and out of jail with the same teeth they came in with.
Carole Caplan, Sacramento
Let her go
Re “Prosecuting an 86-year-old for electioneering? Give the widow a warning and let her go” (Editorials, May 12): It is beyond ridiculous to throw an 86-year-old woman in jail simply because she made a call to remind one of her peers to vote. It really is absurd how our court system gets really strict for irrelevant things but not things that matter.
Paula Lopez, Stockton
Re “President Kamala Harris? She’s making the first moves” (sacbee.com, May 9): Sen. Kamala Harris would make an ideal Democratic candidate for president. She has accomplished nothing and evidently has no business experience.
She can, however, raise funds and give speeches. As a senator, she has no interest in, nor does she respond to, constituents who do not vote Democratic. She believes judges should ignore the law and rule based on outcome: As California attorney general, she fought to make U.S. citizenship essentially meaningless.
John Paul, Carmichael
Re “Trump planned firing before seeking advice” (Page 1A, May 12): Donald Trump gives new meaning to the sixth-grade teacher’s speech urging students that with civic ideals, determination and a moral compass anyone can grow up and become president. Who would have thought that instead it could be the most boorish, disruptive kid in class who cheated on tests, failed to hand in homework, bullied others, stole lunch money, terrorized the girls, and resisted learning much of anything?
Spencer P. Le Gate, Sacramento
Re “Trump fires FBI director, skewing Russia probe” (Page 1A, May 10): The Sacramento Bee reported that firing FBI Director James Comey threw into chaos the politically fraught investigation into whether Russia had colluded with Trump’s campaign.
If the Bee’s editor were fired, would that throw into chaos any ongoing investigative reporting? Of course not, because ongoing investigations are not conducted by upper management.
On Monday, Democrats and Republicans wanted Comey gone. On Tuesday, the liberal media and Democratic leaders immediately changed and accused President Donald Trump of skewing the Russia probe. If Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said he lost confidence in Comey last October, why would he all of a sudden want him to continue heading up the Russian investigation? The Democrats can’t have their cake and eat it too.
Frank Isaac, Roseville
James Comey’s problems started when he tried to keep out of the election process. Far from keeping out, he plunged into it, getting more and more off-balance until he fell.
The FBI had enough evidence to indict Hillary Clinton after completing its investigation. But Comey was afraid that would put him in the middle of the election process and influence the outcome.
Comey became the political version of an off-balance gyroscope that makes wilder and wilder gyrations until it falls. It is clear that for the FBI to regain credibility, a change had to be made.
George Alger, Placerville
Truth and Trump
The intelligence community and the bipartisan leadership in Congress acknowledge the overwhelming evidence of Russia’s hacking involvement in our last election. Only Donald Trump continues to call it a “hoax” and fake news, even as Mike Flynn’s possible illicit activity increasingly comes to light. Multiple investigations to uncover the facts are proceeding. We know that Trump’s frequent fake-news tweets mean the White House is increasingly worried about the truth coming out.
Stephen Farr, Folsom
Let’s listen more
I am struck by how seldom I encounter individuals who really listen to what is being said or data that is presented and are open to modifying their existing views on public policy issues. How have we gotten to a point where we have so many righteous ideologues rather than thoughtful citizens or politicians?
Tyrus Ross Clayton, Rocklin
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