Well, after a stink was raised, some people who support single payer were actually allowed into this 'Summit' staged by Pres. Obama. Not that they were allowed to actually speak, but there were allowed into the building.
In sum, I came out of the White House Health Care Summit with conviction that single payer that is, publicly funded, privately delivered health care, which removes the wasteful for-profit, private health insurance companies as middlemen, remains the only solution that can guarantee access to comprehensive, quality health care with choice of doctor and hospital, and reduce overall cost. Single-payer, an improved and expanded Medicare-for-All, is the gold standard against which all other proposals for health care reform should be measured.
Advocates need to focus on Congress during the next few months. We need to make the case that co-sponsorship of H.R. 676 raises its legitimacy as a gold standard, and that single-payer advocates should be called to testify at congressional hearings.
The one thing that gets me is that people elect Democrats, then expect them to act like Greens. Very few Democrats have backed single-payer in the last decade or so. This is striking to someone like me who grew up listening to Democratic rhetoric where 'national health insurance' was one of their key talking points back in the 70's. So, its no surprise that in a Congress full of these pro-corporate Democrats, single-payer advocates barely can get in the door, and have to beg to even speak at a hearing.
Face it, except for a few exceptions, the Democrats don't support this. That simply means that the majorities of Americans who respond favorably to the idea in poll after poll need to stop voting Democrat. The few Democrats who support this, we should of course support. But we should also realize that for most Democrats, the (D) after the name just indicates an auxiliary employee of the big health corporations.
If you are a part of the majority of Americans that feels this is the solution, then go find your local Green Party.
Here in CO, a group called Health Care for All - Colorado is pushing the state legislature to consider HB09-1273. There's a key hearing on March 18th if you happen be passing through this neck of the prairie.