Saxby hosts town hall in Albany - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Saxby hosts town hall in Albany

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By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - It's a hot issue on Capitol Hill and in towns all across the country. Health care reform, how much is needed and how much control should the government have?

Hundreds of people turned out in Albany Tuesday, to hear Senator Saxby Chambliss talk about healthcare reform. Initially, fewer than 100 people were expected, but as word spread, the event grew and organizers had to book a larger venue at the last minute.

Ultimately, there was standing room only at Thronateeksa Heritage Center for the event. Senator Saxby Chambliss is just beginning his tour of towns around the state, listening to concerns of his constituents regarding health care reform, but it's clear what the main message is.

Chambliss said, "I think without question, what we're hearing more of than anything else from people, all around Georgia is they don't want a government run health care system. They like what they've got."

Though Chambliss knows improvements can be made. He believes affordable health insurance coverage is important for every American, but he says a government plan will only hurt those who already have insurance. Plus, it's too expensive.

He said, "Just look at what we have today, Medicare and Medicaid are two programs that are health insurance programs for Americans. The cost of both of those programs has skyrocketed way too much and we don't see any end in sight."

He touted the healthcare system in America as being the best in the world, a system that saved the lives of his two six month old granddaughters who were born two and a half months premature. He says that's why he relates to people who want to make their own health care decisions, without government having the final say.

"At the end of the day," said Chambliss, "the constituents need to tell us what they want, what do they want from Washington with respect to the healthcare system and how much are they willing to pay?"

Senator Chambliss also said the President's October deadline was too soon and more time is needed before a bill of this magnitude is pushed through.  The Senator plans to spend much of the month of August touring the state for town hall meetings.

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