How’s the Fight Going?

I’ve had many people write me lately, asking for an update on progress with the ballot measure. The truth is that things are going very, very well, but we’ve not been too vocal for one reason: the legislature is showing strong signs that it might do this itself, and the healthcare industry, with the exception of the insurance carriers, are trying very hard to get their members on board. I have been impressed with the physician and hospital associations, and even with the pharmaceutical industry.

I think they all realize this is inevitable, so working with a team that understands the issues and will get the legislation right is more attractive than the alternative—piecemeal legislation that does more harm than good. This legislation, whether enacted by the legislature or the people, represents a truly radical change to our healthcare system, so we won’t be naive and assume the legislature will take care of it, but we can remain hopeful for a couple of more weeks. If they fail, we’ll have to assume a very aggressive position, calling out the legislature and the lobbies that influenced them. We’ll know once we have all sponsors on board in the legislature, the bill has been introduced, and we see a path to the right committee(s) with the right support in those committees. There are a lot of stars to align, but it remains possible.

In the meantime, the ballot measure cleared a major hurdle two weeks ago when it was “Titled”. Today is a rehearing on the Title (a fairly routine process that any controversial measure faces). Then, any one of a number of opponents may file a constitutional challenge. That could take three to six weeks to resolve. So, we’re still a solid month away from being ready to collect signatures regardless of the legislature’s outcomes, and we’re not slowing down to wait for them.

In the meantime, please continue asking your friends, family, and co-workers to contribute and to volunteer. Shepherding this through both the legislature and the ballot process (which keeps pressure on the legislature) is expensive. We have attorneys dealing with the ballot hearings and conducting analysis for legislators who have many questions about various aspects of law. And regardless of how this gets done in Colorado—through the legislature or the ballot measure—there are 49 more states that need our help.

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