While a number of gay organizations have joined their left-wing cohorts in backing the President’s push to overhaul our health care system, Jimmy LaSalvia, executive director of GOProud, offers a word of caution:
The truth is that Democratic efforts to expand government-run healthcare will expand discrimination and make quality, affordable healthcare even less available to gay and lesbian families all across the country.
The Defense of Marriage Act, passed by Congress with overwhelming bipartisan support, and signed by a Democratic president — Bill Clinton — prohibits the extension of domestic partner healthcare benefits and denies recognition of any same-sex relationship. Indeed, even the Obama administration admitted that this legislation would bar the extension of domestic partner healthcare benefits.
Emphasis added. And then there’s the matter of gay people who work for small companies that currently offer domestic partnership benefits. If the cost of the federal penalty for not providing health insurance is less than the cost they are currently paying for health insurance, some businesses may, in order to cut costs, choose to pay the penalty instead of offering coverage, potentially forcing both partners into the public option.
Rather than a “do nothing” approach to health care reform (and so fulfill the caricature the President has drawn of his opponents), LaSalvia believes that “free-market healthcare reforms . . . will expand access to domestic partner benefits,” meaning more choices for people like us. Echoing a point I have often made on this blog, LaSalvia points out that the free market has responded more quickly to the increasing social acceptance of gay men and lesbians than has government at all levels: [Read more…]