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Make Your Voice Heard California Statewide November 2, 2004 General Election
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Proposition 71
   
 
Proposition 72
   
 
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  Title and Summary | Analysis | Text of Proposed Laws

ARGUMENTS AND REBUTTALS

Proposition 72

Health Care Coverage Requirements.
Referendum.

ARGUMENT in Favor of
Proposition 72

Across California, millions of people are working harder and harder to pay their bills. Worst of all is the skyrocketing cost they pay for health care.

Many companies are forcing employees to pay more for health care through higher premiums or cuts in coverage. For employees, higher insurance costs compete with their mortgage or rent, food, and transportation. Many employees are going without the medical care and prescription drugs their families need, creating a health care crisis in California.

It is simply wrong when employees can't afford health insurance for themselves and their children. 72 makes sure that private health insurance remains within reach.

72 WILL LIMIT WHAT EMPLOYEES PAY FOR HEALTH CARE

  • PROBLEM: Employees are paying more-not just because of rising health care costs, but also because businesses are shifting a greater share of the burden to their workers. The amount California families pay for premiums has increased 70% in the last three years. Last year, employee premiums increased at twice the rate of business premiums. Unless something is done, more and more will be passed on to you.
  • SOLUTION: Under 72, large and medium-sized companies must pay at least 80% of the cost of employees' premiums for health insurance.

72 WILL PROVIDE HEALTH INSURANCE TO 1.1 MILLION WORKING PEOPLE AND CHILDREN CURRENTLY UNINSURED

  • PROBLEM: Some employers do not offer their employees insurance. The number of working people without insurance is increasing.
  • SOLUTION: 72 requires large and mid-sized employers to pay for health insurance for employees, extending coverage to an additional 1.1 million working people and their children.

72 ENSURES COVERAGE YOU NEED

  • PROBLEM: Already 30% of businesses say they plan to cut benefits. More will follow.
  • SOLUTION: Under 72, coverage includes prescription drugs, preventive care, and major medical.

72 PROTECTS TAXPAYERS

  • PROBLEM: California taxpayers pay $4.6 billion annually to cover emergency room and health care bills for the uninsured. Taxpayers will pay even more unless something changes.
  • SOLUTION: 72 protects taxpayers by providing health care coverage to an additional 1.1 million workers and their children, taking them out of emergency rooms and placing them in the care of their own doctors.

72 LEVELS THE PLAYING FIELD FOR RESPONSIBLE COMPANIES

  • PROBLEM: Companies that don't provide affordable health care to their employees have an advantage over companies that do.
  • SOLUTION: 72 protects responsible companies from unfair competition by requiring all large and mid-sized companies to pay for health care for employees.

Consumers Union, nonprofit publisher of Consumer Reports, says, "After studying Proposition 72, we conclude it is a necessary step forward that protects health coverage for working Californians."

By capping employees' health care premiums, 72 will keep private health insurance within reach of working families.

If nothing changes, workers will continue to pay more and more for health insurance-or lose their coverage. 72 provides an answer. It's a good first step in protecting employer-based health insurance-and the 19 million Californians who depend on it. Visit www.saveyourhealthcare.com.

RICHARD HOLOBER, Executive Director
Consumer Federation of California

DEBORAH BURGER, RN, President
California Nurses Association

RICHARD F. CORLIN, M.D., Past President
California Medical Association & American Medical Association

REBUTTAL to Argument in Favor of Proposition 72

PROPOSITION 72 WILL NOT CONTROL HEALTH COSTS

Health costs are skyrocketing but Proposition 72 WILL NOT control these costs. Proposition 72 makes the problem worse by creating a huge bureaucracy to administer a government-run health care scheme COSTING EMPLOYERS AND WORKERS an estimated $7 BILLION by 2007.

PROPOSITION 72 CREATES A GOVERNMENT-RUN HEALTH CARE SYSTEM

The backers of 72 are hiding the fact it creates a government- run system. Read it for yourself!-"Chapter 3. State Health Purchasing Program." Many people may lose their existing private coverage and end up in the state plan.

The former head of the state board charged with implementing 72 says it won't work:

"Proposition 72 is fatally flawed and poorly structured. It mandates coverage without controlling costs and forces workers and employers to pay whether they can afford to or not. Proposition 72 just doesn't work."
John Ramey, Former Executive Director
Managed Risk Medical Insurance Board

PROPOSITION 72 DOES NOT HELP THE UNINSURED OR TAXPAYERS

We all want to help the uninsured, but Proposition 72 isn't the solution. Up to 500,000 workers' jobs will be at risk if Proposition 72 becomes law. These people could end up unemployed AND uninsured.

THREATENS ACCESS TO YOUR DOCTORS

Under Proposition 72's state plan, you could lose access to your doctors and hospitals and have to be treated by government-approved providers.

Proposition 72 is not the kind of reform we need! PLEASE JOIN DOCTORS, CHARITIES, EDUCATORS, AND TAXPAYERS-VOTE NO ON 72!

THOMAS LaGRELIUS, M.D., President
California Chapter, Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

GLORIA RIOS, Director
California Association of School Business Officials

JON COUPAL, President
Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

 

ARGUMENT Against
Proposition 72

Real health care reform should control costs and cover more people, but Proposition 72 fails that test. Passed by the Legislature with no meaningful hearings and signed by Governor Davis just days before he was recalled, Proposition 72 creates a huge government-run health care system funded by an estimated $7 billion in new taxes by 2007 on employers and workers.

WORKERS MAY LOSE PRIVATE COVERAGE

Proposition 72 may hurt people who already have health coverage through their employer. You could get forced out of your current plan and into the government-run system! Under Proposition 72 you could lose access to your personal doctor and hospital and end up with a high deductible policy that requires you to pay thousands out of your pocket before getting coverage.

BUREAUCRATS GIVEN TOO MUCH POWER

Under Prop. 72, bureaucrats determine what medical services and providers are covered by the state-run health system and how much you'll pay to support the government- run plan. There are no caps on the administrative fees they can charge. The Orange County Register called it health care with, "the bedside manner of the DMV."

PAY WHETHER YOU WANT IT OR NOT

Proposition 72 is poorly written. You can't decline coverage even if you don't want it or can't afford your share of costs! Employees will pay up to 20% of the cost!

KILLS JOBS/ECONOMY

Proposition 72 will damage California's economy and mean MORE PEOPLE WITHOUT INSURANCE because thousands will lose their jobs as companies close or move out of state. California businesses already struggling with high workers' comp and energy costs just can't afford billions in new health care costs.

COSTS WORKERS $1,700 PER FAMILY

Covered workers will be forced to pay up to 20% of the premiums. The Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation estimates family coverage will cost workers up to $1,700 per year.

Employers must pay 80% of the cost. Many must also pay for dependent coverage, costing over $6,800 per worker each year.

COSTS SCHOOLS AND NONPROFITS MILLIONS

The Association of California School Administrators says Proposition 72 will cost school districts hundreds of millions annually-money urgently needed in classrooms! Nonprofit organizations like Easter Seals and the Goodwill of Long Beach and South Bay oppose Prop. 72 because it makes it harder to provide services to people in need.

Here's how Proposition 72 damages Californians:

"At Easter Seals, the high costs and mandates of Proposition 72 will force us to stop creating new and needed services for people with disabilities."
Gary Kasai, President, Easter Seals Superior California

"Proposition 72 will mandate the worst kind of managed health care we have. This means there will be more and more patients with terrible insurance."
Thomas LaGrelius, M.D., President, California Chapter,
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

"Prop. 72 will discourage those of us who have worked so hard to fulfill the American dream from growing their business and providing more jobs in our communities. Some will simply have to close shop."
C.C. Yin, Restaurant Owner

JOIN EMPLOYERS, EDUCATORS, DOCTORS, NONPROFITS, AND TAXPAYERS: VOTE NO ON PROPOSITION 72!

ALLAN ZAREMBERG, President
California Chamber of Commerce

SANDRA CARSTEN, President
Association of California School Administrators

JAMES G. KNIGHT, M.D., 2003 President
San Diego Medical Society

REBUTTAL to Argument Against Proposition 72

Opponents are using scare tactics so voters will be afraid to approve protections for employees. Their claims are false.

SCARE TACTIC: GOVERNMENT HEALTH CARE REPLACES PRIVATE COVERAGE

Prop. 72 sets standards for health coverage and the share of costs employers must pay-just like the minimum wage sets standards for wages.

"Prop. 72 is the opposite of government-run health care. It strengthens private employer health insurance." John Garamendi, California Insurance Commissioner

If you already get health insurance from your employer, your employer can keep that same coverage under 72 and can continue to pay up to 100% of premiums. You get the security of knowing your employer cannot pay less than 80% of premiums and must maintain preventive care, prescription drugs, and major medical.

SCARE TACTIC: 72 COSTS MORE

Opponents claim premiums could be $1,700 under 72.

But the average California family ALREADY pays $2,452 in premiums (Sacramento Bee , 3/17/04).

Under 72, the average California family will save money.

SCARE TACTIC: JOB KILLER

  • Corporate lobbyists always complain about California's business climate, but California is the world's 6th largest economy.
  • 93% of California's restaurants and retailers are exempt.
  • Businesses will benefit from a healthier, more productive workforce.

IF WE DO NOTHING:

  • Employee premiums will keep rising.
  • More working families will be uninsured.
  • Taxpayers will continue paying health care costs for employees of big companies like Wal-Mart and McDonalds.

Don't be confused by scare tactics. 72 keeps private health care within the reach of California families.

PAUL KIVELA, M.D., President
California Chapter American College of Emergency Physicians

BARBARA E. KERR, President
California Teachers Association

TOM PORTER, California State Director
AARP



Arguments printed on this page are the opinions of the authors and have not been checked for accuracy by any official agency.


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