Our country was founded on a revolutionary concept -- a new kind of government, both empowered and controlled by its citizens.
This idea, the very foundation of our great experiment in democracy, was betrayed with enactment of the new health-care act. Every poll showed that a majority of Americans rejected this legislation, and yet Congress ran right over the majority will of the American people and enacted it into law.
This act must be repealed for this reason alone, but there are many more good reasons.
Our objections were legitimate -- not simply an expression of a political ideology. We were told that costs would be controlled, but all the evidence shows that private insurance costs and taxes are going up. We were told that our own insurance coverage would remain intact, but it has become clear that will also prove false. We were told that seniors would not be hurt, but hundreds of billions of dollars in cuts to Medicare will make doctors wary of taking the elderly on as patients. Our country can ill afford the costs and assaults on health care that this act will bring about.
The mid-term elections are now over and the face of Congress has changed. We will face the prospect of gridlock, but, we, the people, have the power to break the impasse. The clearest demonstration of our determination and will to restore the proper voice of the American people is outright repeal of the health-care act.
We are already hearing from Washington that this will be "difficult." We will hear in coming days and weeks that the White House will make it impossible. I reject these pronouncements, and I am also not willing to wait on the judicial branch to rule that this law is patently unconstitutional. It is important that the people of the United States make the point that we have the final word on public policy and the actions of the legislative branch of our government.
For all these reasons, I am leading a citizen campaign to overturn this destructive and unwanted law. It is called "RepealHealthcareAct.org," and we plan to raise at least five million petitions and do so much more that Congress will have no option except outright repeal. Many have said it is time to "take our country back" and this is how it begins. This was to be the "signature issue" of Mr. Obama, but he failed to get our signature on the bottom line.
A new Congress will take office in January and the voice of the people was heard in the elections. Here is the rest of the story about our representative democracy. We will be telling our elected representatives what we want from them in unmistakable terms. We will not be accepting half-truths, half-efforts or the usual legislative escape hatches that put off to some undefined future date what we are demanding right now.
In enacting this law, politicians and lobbyists believed that they knew better than the American people. They forced upon us what we did not want to accept. It has happened before under the rule of a King George, and we rejected his arrogance when we founded a new kind of nation -- our United States of America.
We became the hope of the world with our grand experiment and now we must renew the promise of the Founding Fathers. To do so we must teach this fundamental lesson of self-determination to our own leaders. Together, we will.
Michael Reagan is the elder son of President Ronald Reagan and a political consultant. He is the founder and chairman of The Reagan Group and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. E-mail comments to Reagan@caglecartoons.com.