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Emily Mills, Madison Freelance Writer, Starts Column In Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

October 12, 2013

I am really pleased to know that Emily Mills, a well-known and much-respected Madison writer is now able to see her ideas published in a major Wisconsin newspaper.  How cool is that?!  Her writings will appear on the opinion page of the paper.

In Mills’ first column she nailed the issue of health care, and in part wrote the following.

How can we, as Americans, call ourselves a developed nation when millions of  our citizens still can’t afford even basic levels of care? The current model of  for-profit health insurance automatically spells disaster for too many people,  and not even just those in the lowest income brackets. For instance, my family  was once bankrupted by medical bills even though we had a fairly standard  insurance plan and a solid middle-class life. The edge is scarily close for most  folks, and it’s growing closer all the time.

And we’re stuck dealing with leaders such as Gov. Scott Walker  (R-Presidential hopeful), who opted to turn down about $4.4 billion (through  2020) in federal funds for a Medicaid expansion, deciding instead to go for a  hybrid approach that tightened income requirements for the state-run system and  left everyone else to the private exchange market. That means that a family of  four with a yearly income of just $23,550 is no longer eligible for low-to-no  cost coverage under state programs. They will instead need to buy insurance on  the exchanges and hope that the associated federal subsidies will be enough to  make them affordable.

I’m trying to imagine supporting a family of four on so little money, let  alone factoring in health insurance costs. It’s difficult enough for an  individual making that much money to support themselves, let alone three other  people. Contrary to what certain big fast food chains seem to think, simply not  paying your heat bill isn’t really an option.

So what do you do?

Wisconsin now holds the rather dubious distinction of leading the nation in  the number of low-income people it’s kicking off its Medicaid rolls.

This isn’t just a moral issue, though I’d argue that is the most important  consideration. The seemingly visceral hatred by some on the right for anything 

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