Sick children left behind

Bush vetos health insurance program for poor kids; MoveOn and MomsRising take action.

Published October 3, 2007 5:23PM (EDT)

George W. Bush tiptoed into a closed, press-free room this morning to make the fourth, and possibly least flattering, veto of his presidency: a bill that would have provided funding for the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Word is that as a result of the veto, nearly 7 million children could lose healthcare coverage next month -- and millions more won't get covered in the first place. The bill, which is not to be confused with an advance toward "socialized medicine," has bipartisan (not to mention public) support, though possibly not enough for a veto override in the House.

Bush does want to increase funding for SCHIP, to the tune of $5 billion over five years. In other news, he also wants to increase funding for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, to the tune of $190 billion over one year.

The not-unexpected move may or may not have "handed Dems the 2008 election," as some more excitable commenters have suggested, but it has definitely spurred a fast and loud call to action. MomsRising is mobilizing its members to join MoveOn's eleventh-hour rallies around the country tomorrow to protest the veto and call for an overturn. Click here to find a rally near you.

By Lynn Harris

Award-winning journalist Lynn Harris is author of the comic novel "Death by Chick Lit" and co-creator of She also writes for the New York Times, Glamour, and many others.

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