Quick debate thoughts

The second North Carolina Gubernatorial debate between Mayor McCrory and Lt. Gov Dalton featured no discussion of Medicaid (potential expansion under Obamacare, issues related to mental health, etc.) or health reform. Keep in mind that about 1 in 4 dollars of the state budget goes to Health and Human Services, with Medicaid being by far the largest portion. Further, Gov. Romney says that he plans to repeal Obamacare and provide states with more flexibility (and less money) to develop their own health reform plans. Wonder what Mayor McCrory plans to do if elected (he is far ahead in the polls)? I have never heard him mention one word about health reform. If anyone has, please point me to it.

The Presidential debate didn’t have much on health policy either. My registered Republican wife who is mostly disinterested but who did watch had two thoughts: she thought Gov. Romney was disrespectful to both the moderator and the President, and she thought the Libya exchange made Gov. Romney look petty. Me, I am pretty much exhausted by it all, and as I was drifting off to sleep, was reminded of a story about my granddaddy.

There was a revival meeting of sorts at his church in rural, Eastern North Carolina, and a visiting evangelist had come to give a series of messages, and I went with my granddaddy one evening. After the sermon, the Preacher was asking various congregants and Deacons if they wanted to add or amplify on what had been said. When he was asked “Brother P.L. do you have a word?” my grandaddy who was a bit of a stoic and not much of a talker said with a quick glint in his eye “Preacher, I believe that enough has been said tonight already, and it is time to go home.”

In much the same way, it is time to vote. It starts tomorrow in North Carolina.

About Don Taylor
Professor of Public Policy at Duke University (with appointments in Business, Nursing, Community and Family Medicine, and the Duke Clinical Research Institute). I am one of the founding faculty of the Margolis Center for Health Policy, and currently serve as Chair of Duke's University Priorities Committee (UPC). My research focuses on improving care for persons who are dying, and I am co-PI of a CMMI award in Community Based Palliative Care. I teach both undergrads and grad students at Duke. On twitter @donaldhtaylorjr

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