PATIENTS’ RIGHTS: Gore To Hold Forum In Michigan
Vice President Al Gore is traveling to Michigan today where he will help raise campaign funds for Democrats and "host a forum on patients' bill of rights issues with the" sponsor of the Democratic HMO reform bill, Rep. John Dingell (D-MI). The forum is scheduled for this morning at the University of Michigan-Dearborn. The event will be attended by "doctors, nurses and others from the health care community" (Detroit Free Press, 9/23).
Missouri Senate Race
Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon, the Democrat challenging incumbent Sen. Kit Bond (R-MO) in the fall election, has joined a "parade" of other candidates in airing a TV ad "focusing on health care and the 'patients' bill of rights.'" The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that "Nixon's ad, which began airing last weekend in outstate Missouri, takes out after insurance companies" and criticizes Bond's position on the HMO reform issue. The ad trumpets Nixon's support of the Democratic patients' rights bill pending in Congress and states that Bond, who supports the alternative GOP bill, has voted against patients' rights and "allowing you to choose your own doctor." Bond spokesperson Dan Hubbard "challenges the assertion," saying the bill Nixon supports will only benefit trial lawyers and "lead to more time in the courtroom." In recent weeks, both the Missouri Democratic Party and the AFL-CIO ran ads in the state in support of the Democratic proposal (Mannies, 9/22).