On Feb. 27, Dr. Gary Freed, professor at the University of Michigan, discussed the similarities and differences between healthcare back in the 1970’s compared to now.
Dr. Freed talked about the healthcare plan that President Richard Nixon proposed in the 1970’s and spoke about how there are some aspects to it that were the same as ObamaCare. Part of Obamacare said that employers with at least 50 employees are required to provide healthcare for them, but in Nixon’s plan, it required the employers to provide the healthcare to the employees even if there were less than 50 employees. He made other comparisons to President Nixon’s healthcare plan with ObamaCare, but the biggest difference in the political parties that proposed these plans are simple; Nixon’s was Republican and Obama’s was Democratic. Finally, Dr. Freed discussed single payer healthcare and the problems that he sees with it, but also a scenario where he sees it working out.
John Murphy from the International Brotherhood of Teamsters spoke about the Butch-Lewis Act, which involves protecting pensions for workers and retirees. He also discussed why Republicans attack pensions. One of the reasons behind this is they believe that keeping pensions in place saves unions, and Republicans, generally speaking, do not stand for unions.