August 28, 2017—Moab, Utah—Immediately following her major announcement that she would not take corporate donations, Dr. Kathie Allen and her campaign traveled to Moab, Utah, and participated in several campaign events.
At 6:30 pm on Thursday, August 24, at the Grand County Library, Dr. Allen hosted the latest in her series of health care town halls, where she delivered a message about fighting the opioid crisis using all solutions, including medical cannabis. She was joined by local resident Charles Kulander, an expert in navigating health insurance marketplaces, who spoke about his experience navigating coverage during his late wife’s struggle with cancer. According to Mr. Kulander, Grand County will have only two health insurance options in its 2018 marketplace.
During an open question-and answer session, several residents expressed their frustration and displeasure with the current state of medicine in America. Many voiced support for the type of universal health care coverage plan supported by Dr. Allen.
After the event, Dr. Allen greeted attendees until the library closed.
The following evening, Dr. Allen participated in the 3rd District Candidates Assembly in Moab along with the seven other candidates (including write-in candidates) for this office. Each candidate delivered up to six minutes of prepared remarks before the group fielded questions from the audience. In her remarks, Dr. Allen presented her “treatment plan” to fix America’s health care system. Her statement on lowering prescription drug prices garnered the loudest applause of the evening.
Finally, on the morning of August 26, Dr. Allen greeted volunteers at Moab’s Eklecticafe before they began a canvas of Moab.
Below is the full text of Dr. Kathie Allen’s prepared remarks at the 3rd District Candidates Assembly in Moab, Utah, August 25, 2017:
Our country faces many challenges, but all of them share one common problem: nothing is getting done in Washington. Part of the reason for this is that so many of our public servants are beholden to special interests. I won’t be. As we declared in our press conference yesterday, we will not be accepting donations from corporations. Corporations are not people. I want to answer solely to you, my constituents.
To change the status quo, we need to elect a new voice to represent our district. I announced weeks ago that I intend to join the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, a group of representatives from both sides of the aisle who recognize that the current polarity is unsustainable, and who know that to move forward, we must work together.
The first problem we need to solve—and quickly—is health care. I’m not just running to be a new voice in Congress. I’m also running because I have thirty years’ experience as a family doctor—experience we need as we debate how to fix our broken health care system. Here’s my treatment plan:
- We stop trying to repeal and replace Obamacare and start building a solution that covers every American. In the meantime, we prevent the insurance markets from collapsing by guaranteeing subsidies.
- We offer a public option for coverage, like Medicare or Medicaid, to greatly expand coverage for kids and adults. Senator Schatz has introduced legislation just this month to allow people to buy in to Medicaid. This would provide another option to ACA markets where only 1 or 2 are currently offered.
- We reduce the costs of pharmaceuticals. If we bring generics to market faster, get rid of TV ads for drugs, and allow price negotiations for Medicare, your prescription drug costs will go down. And those are just a few of my suggestions.
- We make patient health, not profit, the primary goal of our health care system. If we do, we can save 600 billion dollars of wasted money per year.
Once we fix health care, I know that another important issue to many of you is public lands. Humankind is part of this natural world, and we need untouched wilderness areas to remind us of that. But communities nearby don’t need to suffer from conservation. I support substantially increasing the Payments In Lieu of Taxes that communities like Moab receive to offset the lost property tax revenue from nearby public lands.
In regards to the Bears Ears National Monument, I am particularly impressed that so many different Native American tribes put aside their own differences and came together in a spirit of unity to suggest the boundaries of the monument. We should follow that example of laying aside contention and working together to preserve these lands for all Americans.
As we preserve these lands, we need to be wise stewards of the resources we do extract. Fossil fuel industries are declining due to free market pressures. We should invest our money where the jobs are—in solar, wind, and other renewable energies, which will result in a better economy, a cleaner, healthier planet, and safer working conditions. Of course we must help employees transition from the jobs of the past to the careers of the future. This will also strengthen our national security—because almost all of America’s enemies benefit when we’re stuck on fossil fuels. It may even keep us out of unnecessary wars.
Underpinning all these policies is education. Each child deserves the chance to reach his or her full potential. If they don’t have that chance, how can we expect America to maintain its leadership in the world?
We must fund education, and public schools have to be our priority. The fact is that kids who transition from public schools to private charter schools actually experience a decline in performance. We can never know if the next great American inventor might come from the Diné Bikéyah. Or maybe from Grand County Middle School, just down the street from here. But if those kids don’t have the resources they need now, they might not be able to grow up to be mayors, or businesspeople, or even family doctors.
I am a family doctor, and as such, I look at the facts, diagnose the problem, and find the right solutions. That’s what I plan to do in Washington. I’ve also told you some truths you might not have liked hearing. But that’s part of being a doctor, too—and the thing that sets honest politicians apart from the general member of Congress.