MPA Members Kick Off MaineCare Accountability Campaign

Maine People's Alliance members went door to door in neighborhoods in Brewer today to talk with voters about the campaign to accept the federal funds to expand health care to 70,000 Maine people and asked residents to contact their state Senator, Edward Youngblood, and urge him to vote to override the Governor’s expected veto of the bill.
Participants gathered at Sunset Park to publicly launch the voter education canvass and urge Senator Youngblood to support the thousands of Mainers who are being denied access to health care. 
“Senator Youngblood has a clear choice: to continue to stand with Governor LePage and his politics of obstruction and deny critical, life-saving health care to Mainers, or stand with the overwhelming majority of Maine people and vote to make sure no one goes without the care they need,” said MPA Penobscot Valley Organizer, Amelia Mitter-Burke. “If Sen. Youngblood stands with Governor LePage and the legislature fails to accept federal health care funding, then this issue will be decided in November's election."
For Susan Alexa of Bangor, the debate over health care in Augusta has direct consequences.
“Last fall I got the notice that I would lose MaineCare on December 31st. I had to meet with my doctor to refill my prescriptions for as long as we could to prepare for life without coverage. Now I have to ask: when the medication runs out, what do I do?” said Alexa, who recently returned to school after more than 30 years as a corporate sales executive. “I am here today to urge Senator Youngblood to do the right thing and support this common-sense solution.  He has a chance make sure that all Mainers can have options, and that they can access the care that they need. I know as I finish my degree and start a new career it will make all the difference.”
“MaineCare expansion is important to all of us. It is especially critical for Mainers who work hard every day at low wage jobs with no benefits. This would provide them the needed access to health care that is so important to our workforce,” said Shawn Yardley, Director of Community Services at Penobscot Community Health Care. “It is also important to Maine’s health care industry, which strives every day to provide care to all who need it. This is an economic opportunity that Maine should not pass up and we urge all our senators and representatives to the vote for what is best for the people of Maine.”
A bill to expand health care for 70,000 people was passed with bipartisan support in both the Senate and House, but will require two-thirds support in each chamber to override a likely veto from Governor LePage. The fate of the bill, and health care for thousands of Mainers could be decided by only a handful of lawmakers. In December, a poll conducted by the Maine People’s Resource Center in key swing House Districts found that 69% of voters supported accepting the federal funds to expand access to health care. A majority of those voters indicated they would be less likely to support candidates who voted against health care expansion.
“At MPA, we speak to Mainers without health care every day. Our family, our friends and our neighbors are the ones whose lives are on the line in this debate,” said MPA Bangor Field Canvass Director Sam Portera. “I have seen this in my own life when I lost MaineCare when I was managing serious health problems and working three jobs to support myself through college. I almost didn't finish school because I lost that critical coverage. I urge my state Senator, Edward Youngblood, to reconsider his vote to make sure that no one else has to experience that struggle.”