October 4, 2007
President George W. Bush wielded his veto power Wednesday – only the 4th time during his presidency – to deny renewal of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).
The veto of SCHIP renewal means 6.6 million children of low-income families will lose their health care when funding expires on November 16 unless the Congress acts quickly to override. An additional 4 million children from low-middle income families that would have gained coverage will continue to go without any health insurance.
It takes a two-thirds majority to override a veto, and the 67 to 29 Senate vote to approve children health bill is expected to hold up. But the 265 to 159 House vote fails about 25 votes short of what is needed to override the veto.
An override will almost certainly count on two North Carolina Democrats who voted against SCHIP renewal – Rep. Bob Etheridge of the 2nd Congressional District and Rep. Mike McIntyre of the 7th CD. The North Carolina State AFL-CIO calls on our members, friends, families, and allies to contact Etheridge and McIntyre and urge them to override Bush’s callous veto.
SCHIP renewal would have allocated an additional $7 billion a year over five years to cover children from families with gross incomes too high to qualify for medicaid but too low to afford private health insurance. Bush, Etheridge and McIntyre think that’s just too much cost to bare for 4 million more kids to have health care.
In related news, the Bush Administration has requested an additional $189 billion this year for the war in Iraq.
Call Bob Etheridge and Mike McIntyre and tell them get their priorities straight and to vote to override the President’s callous veto of SCHIP renewal. You can download this flyer with a toll-free number and talking points to use during your call.
Ask to be connected to Etheridge and McIntyre’s offices