State News

North Carolinians rally on opposing sides of health care debate

Posted November 5, 2009
Updated November 6, 2009

— While some North Carolinians headed to Washington, D.C., to oppose to a Democrat-sponsored health care bill Thursday, others gathered at the State Capitol to say why they think the overhaul is vital.

Disagreement between the two groups centered on the government-run, or public, option included in a $1.2 trillion health-care overhaul bill in the U.S. House of Representatives.

rally in Raleigh North Carolinians engage in health care debate

Opponents of the public option hopped on a bus in Raleigh before dawn. They joined the group Americans for Prosperity for a noon protest at the Capitol building in D.C., then headed to visit their representatives to urge them to vote against the bill.

"If it passes, the government is going to choose what we can have, and I feel like it's important that we get to make our decisions and our own choices," said Betsy Gravitt, of Greensboro.

"I am absolutely convinced that I am on the side of the majority of Americans who do not want this program, who do not want it to become socialistic, who do not want to pile on debt," said Wes May, who added that he prefers the free enterprise system.

Representatives from a range of civil-rights group, though, gathered at the State Capitol in the late morning to say the health-care system is broken and one of the best remedies is a public option.

Protesters held giant yellow signs reading "I am human," to say that the issue is about people.

"We must help all our fellow Americans, and we need health care reform, and we need a strong public option," said Rev. William J. Barber, president of the NAACP North Carolina State Conference.

Benjamin Todd Jealous, president and CEO of the national NAACP, visited the Raleigh rally while touring states considered pivotal to the health care vote. He said that most black people know someone who has died because of an ineffective health care policy.

"This is real. We will make decisions as citizens and lawmakers as to whether people live or die in the next decade," Jealous said.

The House is expected to vote on its version of the overhaul soon. It's unclear when the Senate might take up similar legislation.


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  • james27613 Nov 6, 2009

    The entire Bill is below, straight from the GPO.

    scan for the work 'penalty'

  • oldschooltarheel Nov 6, 2009

    Obama not a quickdraw? try googling "7/22/9 Obama Cambridge racist" & see what even ABC has him quoted as saying. Amazed WRAL censored the quote (word for word via ABC not a lick of paraphrasing). Quickdraw McGraw when he wants to be.

  • wildcat Nov 6, 2009

    The health issue needs to be reevaluated and studied before bringing to the public. Many people are unhappy with it.

  • Justin T. Nov 6, 2009

    "Wilmington-based Baldwin Construction Services, Inc., is planning to design and build the 14,200-square-foot Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue and Rehabilitation Center."

    I Like Turtles.

  • ncguy Nov 6, 2009

    How come the NAACP- is for everything the government can give me for free?????

  • ranquick Nov 6, 2009

    If they want reform so much then don't punish those who do not care for this program, take the bull by the horns and regulate the insurance, drug and medical fields. They are the one to blame for the high cost of medical care, or I forgot aome lawyer need to be in this group.

  • ranquick Nov 6, 2009

    This program is not worth the paper it is written on, it will be just like the Medicare program before it is said and done. I have paid and paid and paid on Medicare and most likely never get a dime back from it, now that is a ripoff.

  • affirmativediversity Nov 6, 2009

    "Wilmington-based Baldwin Construction Services, Inc., is planning to design and build the 14,200-square-foot Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue and Rehabilitation Center.

    The center announced Thursday will include 45 rehabilitation tanks, a laboratory, a surgical suite with an X-ray and an observation deck for the public"


    There's your PUBLIC OPTION at work!!! How much do you want to bet PORKFEST money is funding this boondogle?

  • affirmativediversity Nov 6, 2009

    Face it...the Democrats would be doing Criminal Migrants a favor if they exempted them from this piece of trash!

    The Dem's can exempt Criminal Migrants and ban Federal Funding for Abortion all they want BUT it won't change this Bill into a good piece of legislation.

    People need to stop pondering the periphals and start concentrating of whole thing.


  • nufsaid Nov 6, 2009

    "Irrefutable proof doesn't phase you when it gets in the way of your mental world.

    Very true if you made this statement while looking in the mirror.