This week the Democrats turned their radio address over to Paula Hall who is a child care provider in Spokane, Washington. Mrs. Hall talked about her and her family’s experiences with the nation’s health insurance system, and the Democratic led Congress’s accomplishments. Mrs. Hall started by sharing her healthcare horror story. “My husband and I worked hard all our lives to get the American Dream. But we never thought it could slip away so easily. Six years ago I got a call that changed our lives forever-my husband was hanging onto his life after being hurt very badly on the job. He would never be able to work again. Six months after that we lost our health care. I was now the sole provider for our family and we had no way of paying for the physical therapy and medicine my husband needed.”

She continued, “I worked 14 hour days and barely made enough for our mortgage payments. To afford the bare necessities, I went to night school to get a weekend job that paid more than the minimum wage. I don’t know how I managed it-but I had clearly worn my body out. In 2005 I had an emergency triple bypass that failed. In the next 17 months, I had 9 angioplasties and 5 stents placed in my heart. Then came the bills. With no insurance, we had no way to pay the hundreds of thousands of dollars it took to save my life. We had no way to pay for the medicine and no way to pay our mortgage with me out of work. To try and save the house we raised our daughter in, we used up all our savings, cashed in what little my husband had for retirement and sold anything of value. Unfortunately it wasn’t enough. We had to file for bankruptcy and we lost our home. Everyday, we don’t know if we can make the rent or even buy food.”

“I never thought my life would be like this. Nobody should have to lose everything because they don’t have health care. What’s scarier is that more and more families have similar stories. But I feel like there is finally some hope for a better future. Child care providers in Washington united together with SEIU to fight for paychecks that support a family and provide affordable health care. And last November we elected a new Congress to change direction and take on the challenges families like mine face everyday. The Democrats we elected are already making a difference in our families’ lives. When you have to choose between rent and food, you shouldn’t have to worry about affording gas to get to the grocery store. But Democrats passed an energy bill that will help bring prices down,” Hall said.

Then the blatant self congratulations for the Democratic Congress, “Democrats also passed the first minimum wage increase in ten years. Raising the minimum wage won’t make anyone rich, but it will help hard working people take home a little more each month. Just this week, Congress ensured that more children like my daughter can get health care when their parents can’t afford it by approving the Children’s Health Insurance Program. President Bush has threatened a veto, but health care for children is too important to play politics with.” Mrs. Hall talked about the Democrats expansion of financial aid and the child tax credit. “My daughter has been very brave. In fact, the only time she says much about our situation is when she talks about college. But we don’t have a penny saved-it all went to try to save the house and keep food on the table.”

She concluded, “She’ll need loans. Thankfully Congress has passed the largest student assistance program since 1944. It increases aid eligibility and offers loan forgiveness for students like my daughter who want to teach or do other public service work. Democrats also passed a child tax credit that might help us raise our kids and put money away for college. Things might not have worked out as planned for my family, but we haven’t lost hope. I think Democrats get it. If you work hard and do what’s right, you should earn a paycheck that supports a family and provides health care, a secure retirement, and a better future for all kids.”

The first half of this address, which was the Hall story, was very good. Why did someone in the Democratic Party feel the need to ruin what could have been a very powerful story by making Paula Hall run through the Democrats’ political accomplishments? It demeans her story and makes it seem like she is being used for political propaganda purposes. I wish they would have let her tell her story, and then driven the point home that situations like hers are why we need to do something about the cost of healthcare in this country.

For people like Paula Hall, tax deductions aren’t going to solve their problems. Instead of taking this more intelligent route, someone decided that America needed to be reminded that the Democrats are still doing things, even if they are failing on Iraq. The Democratic Party needs to be told that stories like Paula Hall’s deliver a powerful message, which their idiotic spin only insults.

Full text of Democratic radio address 

Jason Easley is the editor of the politics zone at  His news column The Political Universe appears on Tuesdays and Fridays at 

Jason can also be heard every Sunday at 7:00 pm (ET) as the host of The Political Universe Radio Show at

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