February 23rd, 2010
12:45 PM ET
13 years ago

Inouye, Stabenow sign on to public option letter

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/02/23/art.inouye.stabenow.gi.jpg caption="Sens. Daniel Inouye and Debbie Stabenow have both signed on to a letter calling for a health care public option to be adopted by reconciliation."]Washington (CNN) - Sen. Daniel Inouye, the chairman of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee, is the latest signatory to a letter calling on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to pass a health care public option using reconciliation, his office confirmed to CNN.

The letter, penned by Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colorado and co-signed by Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand, Jeff Merkley, and Sherrod Brown, was released last Tuesday. It now has 23 signatories, all of whom are Democrats. The letter is chiefly promoted by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.

Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow also signed the letter on Monday, according to her office. Stabenow has long supported a public option and is a member of the Senate Finance Committee. Three other Finance Committee members have signed the letter.

The White House unveiled a health care proposal Monday that does not include a public option.

Filed under: Daniel Inouye • Debbie Stabenow • Health care
soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. mjm

    The final bill doesn't have a public option because America doesn't want a public option. Reconciliation wont change that.....but is is the fastest way to get voted out of office....so go for it Dems!

    February 23, 2010 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  2. Liz

    Single-payor is the only real solution to the health care crisis, but the public option is a good start. it does need to pass by whatever means necessary. republican'ts have made it clear they're perfectly ok with 40,000 american people dying every year (that's almost as many as we lost during the whole viet nam war!) for lack of health insurance. leave them out of the process and make it clear to even the most intellectually-challenged among us who cares about the american people and who cares about the insurance companies!

    February 23, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  3. Term Limits

    Seriously, do these IDIOT, LIBERAL, WHACK JOBS, not realize that the MAJORITY of AMERICANS do NOT want this?

    I realize the majority of the DNC, the liberal PACs, the large influential Dumbacratic donors may benefit from reform and want it, but constituents are who vote.

    This fall every piece of mail, radio/TV ad, internet pop-up window, spam email, recorded phone call, etc... will not save these folks.

    February 23, 2010 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  4. Bob in Pa

    More angry facist liberals doing their best to take what doesn't belong to them.

    February 23, 2010 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  5. opticecho

    The United States would benefit greatly from a public option. Thank you to Senators Inouye and Stabenow and the 21 others who are committed to progressive change!!!

    February 23, 2010 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  6. Stallion

    If the democrat majority wants to push, in spite of the overwhelming public public polls, then a major percentage of them will be gone come election time.......No more tricks, spin or manipulations....The majority of voters are smart enough to see through their tactics. Plain and Simple.

    February 23, 2010 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  7. Independent One

    Silly Senators a half of loaf is better than no loaf....Sentor Bayh is right about Den and the Repubs.....WE NEED A THIRD PARTY!!!!

    February 23, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  8. Aunt Bea and Opie

    Do it NOW,just ram it down their throats like Bush did with tax cuts for the rich only.

    February 23, 2010 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  9. No Incumbents 2010

    Having served 47 years in the Senate, career politician Daniel Inouye is the poster boy for term limits. He has single-handedly turned the Senate into his own personal taxpayer-funded nursing home, with legislative aides doing everything for him. Inouye is now running for another 6-year term!!! Thanks Alaska for running up our national debt to pay for your bridge to nowhere!!!

    February 23, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  10. Jim Spangler

    Each new signature an ultimate demise for a political future.

    February 23, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  11. ran

    Yes we can get a public option by reconciliation if the Republicans and blue dogs and Lieberman will not join us the people in getting it by end of business day 2/25/2010.

    We should be getting single payer universal health care but a public option will do for now. Once people see how much money a public option will save just in executive salaries/bonuses, no money for dividends to shareholders, no money for private jests or gold platted dinnerware in the boardrooms, the people will be knocking on the door to get in and so will any business who wants to cut their health care cost.

    A change is a coming people. Have hope and we will get our country back ; but only if we elect true Democrats or independents and not reward a single fear/hate/obstructions/purity Republican or a blue dog and definitely no more Lieberman.

    February 23, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  12. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    I would like to see a public option included because it may be the only place that some people can get a policy that they can afford. I know that there are some crazy people out there that think this will cost far too much. I have to say that if these people can go to the doctor for regular check ups, then they will be in better health and contribute more to their employer and their taxes rather than be relying on ER care and passing that payment onto the rest of us.

    February 23, 2010 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  13. johnnie w

    What is all the FUSS, about this CNN, about the PUBLIC OPTION, that gives the AMERICAN PEOPLE, a CHOICE, you can KEEP your OWN INSURANCE, or you can OPT to CHOOSE another if you DECIDE to do SO. That is AMERICA, the FREDOM to SELECT your CHOICES. Great for the SENATORS , Daniel Inouye and Debbie Snow,and the OTHER SENATORS ,that have SIGN the LETTER. Prediction ,there will be Aa MAJORITY ,that follows, 30 MILLION Americans with no INSURANCE, and the GOP is fighting Against ,what is GOOD for the COUNTRY, 2010 MIDTERMS, are looing BACK to YES WE CAN and YES WE DID.Cnn when will your GOP NETWORK , come to the REALITY, that the DEMOCRATS have 3 MAJORITIES, do the MATH. All this BALONEY about the PUBLIC OPTION being DEAD, well this is CHANGE i CAN BELIEVE in.President Obama ,said I DONT QUIT, and this GOP summit with President Obama on Feb. 25th, is the the FINAL DOOM for the Party of NO, they wil be EXPOSED on all NETWORKS, CHANGE has COME, and let FREEDOM RING, you got that GOP........ CNN.

    February 23, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  14. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    We just need 27 more votes and it's a Public Option which the majority of Americans want!! I bet after the summit on Thursday, we'll see a significant number of senators signing onto the letter.

    February 23, 2010 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  15. gt

    these are two good reason for term limits,,,old .. no ideas,,,stabenow has done nothing of any value for michigan or the country,,,

    February 23, 2010 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  16. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    Good! At last the Democrats, and perhaps some Republicans with a conscience will support Public Option & Healthcare!

    February 23, 2010 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  17. Victim of GOP Taliban

    Thank you Senators. Nice to know at least some Senators have a backbone and are doing something for the people instead of the big $ lobbyists.

    February 23, 2010 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  18. Lisa P

    Forget a public option - single payer is the only plan that makes sense if the goal is really to save money, cover everybody and end private insurance industry abuses. Any other plan is just a set-up for failure.

    February 23, 2010 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  19. givemegrat

    It is my RIGHT to be given health care whether i dont pay for or if you do
    giveme my free meds giveme my pot to smoke giveme an operation that doesnt cost too much because the doctors are working cheap these days giveme giveme giveme it is my right IT SAYS SO RIGHT IN THE CONSTITUTION AND BILL OF RIGHTS GIVEME MY RIGHTS

    February 23, 2010 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  20. chris l

    Nont gonna happen. Liberals really are morons. Stabenow is the epitome of "you could put lipstick on a pig but its still a pig"

    February 23, 2010 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  21. cindy ex-republican

    GOOD!!! Stand up to those republicans and show them what you are made of. It is time to get tough, too many people need help.

    February 23, 2010 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  22. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    The only effect of that letter will be to more clearly identify which politicians are too far to the left to hold office in America–the signatories are obviously way too out of touch with the 56% of the population who oppose government meddling in health care. Not even all of the 41% minority who support health care welfare are in favour of the public option or reconciliation.

    The net effect is that the people who sign that letter are betraying the interests of a clear majority of Americans, perhaps even a large majority, in order to pander to people too irresponsible, improvident, or indolent to see to their own affairs.

    February 23, 2010 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  23. Independent

    Americans have consistently supported the public option for health-care reform. It would increase market competition and hold insurance companies more accoutable to consumers.

    February 23, 2010 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  24. Bedtime for Obonzo

    Debbie Stabenow, Michigan's invisible senator, is a useless tool of Harry Reid. As a Michigan voter, I know.

    February 23, 2010 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  25. Pepou

    We need the PUBLIC OPTION. NOW !!!!

    February 23, 2010 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |