Friday, January 13, 2006

Maryland Democrats Make History – Reject Ehrlich Veto

Override Gives Taxpayers a Break from Corporate Health Care Welfare

Annapolis: With courageous Democratic leadership and Democratic votes – fortified by common sense, fundamental fairness and the concern for the welfare of taxpayers - the Maryland General Assembly made history and rejected Gov. Robert Ehrlich’s veto of the Fair Share Healthcare Bill. It now becomes the first such law of its kind in the nation despite the intense high-powered lobby efforts of Wal-Mart and its allies in the Republican Party.

“With this override, Maryland is now protecting the average taxpayer and small business person from subsidizing the profits of outlaw mega-corporations with their tax dollars,” says Terry Lierman, Maryland Democratic Party Chair. “If Ehrlich, Steele and Wal-Mart had won this fight, Maryland businesses would have been big losers in the ongoing struggle between the local employer and the giant corporate predator intent on keeping its corporate welfare in place and its friendly politicians fat and happy.”

Wal-Mart is among those mega-corporations that refuse to provide adequate health care coverage for their employees. So, they depend on tax supported government health care programs to cover medical care and expenses. Maryland is the only state which guarantees hospital services to anyone regardless of their ability to pay. “Health care by emergency room” is not free and the cost is absorbed by everyone else through higher insurance rates and higher taxes that fund hospital reimbursements, Medicare and Medicaid.

“Corporations like Wal-Mart should never be allowed to profit by dumping the health care costs of their workers on Maryland’s working families and small business owners,” adds Lierman. “Democrats showed great courage defending all Marylanders from corporate outlaws who bleed our state budget and every household budget in Maryland for the sake of their multi-billion dollar profits.”

“This vote is a sad example of the hypocrisy of Maryland Republicans who choose to defend this onerous form of corporate welfare and vote against the interests of Maryland’s working families, bread winners and small businesses,” adds Lierman.

Derek Walker

Maryland Democratic Party

301-858-8818/410-269-8818 (office)

410-980-0939 (mobile)

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