Below is the press release from Connecticut Citizens Action Group regarding U.S. Senator Joseph Lieberman’s health care forum at the State Capitol Monday
The cost of the Iraq war to CT taxpayers is significantly greater than the funding needed to provide coverage to every uninsured child in CT, according to a USAction Education Fund report recently released by [USAction affiliate, Connecticut Citizen Action Group (CCAG)]. CT’s share of the $456 billion in Iraq war funding through 2007 – $11 billion – could provide health care to 4,399,425 uninsured children, 17 times more than the 71,123 uninsured children in CT.
This morning, dozens of Anti-War protesters and Health Care Advocates gathered outside a health care forum hosted by Senator Lieberman at the Legislative Office Building. The group called on Lieberman to invest in health care for children not on war. The group led by CT Opposes the War (COW) and the CT Citizen Action Group (CCAG) linked the rising cost of the war in Iraq and the relatively smaller investment of providing kids health care.
The CT cost of war data underscores the misplaced priorities of the Bush administration. President Bush is asking Congress for $50 billion in additional funding to continue his endless war in Iraq while threatening to veto $50 billion passed by the House to fully fund the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) for the next five years.
“CT is telling our Members of Congress and Senator Lieberman, “enough is enough” – it’s time to reverse the upside-down priorities that have squandered $11 billion of CT taxpayers’ money while neglecting over 70,000 uninsured children in CT, said John Murphy, Stirring Committee member of COW.
The White House has threatened to veto any funding over the president’s suggested levels, calling needed funding for children’s health care “excessive.” The president’s proposal, however, was woefully inadequate and wouldn’t even cover the children currently receiving health coverage through SCHIP. The need to expand SCHIP was underscored by recent census data that indicated 700,000 more children were uninsured in 2006 than in 2005.
CT Members of Congress have a simple choice: will they vote to spend even more of CT taxpayers money in Iraq while opposing funding to cover more than 70,000 children in CT?