How does McKinney/Clemente compare to Obama/Biden on health care, labor, & economy?

The Green Imperative: A strong social safety net for all Americans, including quality health care regardless of ability to pay, employment, age, or prior medical condition

Green Party leaders challenged the media and campaign hype of the Democratic National Convention by comparing the positions taken by Barack Obama and Joe Biden with the Green presidential nominees, Cynthia McKinney and Rosa Clemente.

“McKinney’s track record has been one of leadership and fighting for people.  Obama’s track record has been all style and little substance,” said Jody Grage, treasurer of the Green Party of the United States.

“On health care, the social safety net, and other major economic issues, Cynthia McKinney and Rosa Clemente are far more in tune with the ideals of most voters than the Democratic candidates are.  This is why Rosa Clemente, in her vice-presidential nomination speech at the Green National Convention in July, talked about the Green Imperative — the need for a major party that represents We The People.  The corporations already own two parties,” Ms. Grage added.

Greens compared Ms. McKinney’s record in Congress to Mr. Obama’s.  Ms. McKinney, in her six terms as Georgia member of the US House, established national leadership on foreign policy, the environment, and human rights.  Mr. Obama, in his single US Senate term, has shown no comparable national leadership on any major issues.

“If Cynthia McKinney isn’t invited to the debates, millions of Americans won’t know that there’s a presidential candidate and a political party that stand for their own needs and ideals,” said Jill Bussiere, co-chair of the Green Party of the United States.

Health Care Reform

• Cynthia McKinney and Rosa Clemente
— support Single-Payer National Health Care (Medicare For All: see, which would provide all Americans with quality health care regardless of ability to pay, employment, age, or prior medical condition.  Single-Payer will remove HMOs and insurance firms from control over health care, give Americans choice of health care provider, provide no-cost or low-cost prescriptions based on need, and ease the burden on physicians and other health care providers.  Under Single-Payer, working people will pay for less for coverage, and no American will go bankrupt because of health care costs.
Video clips: Cynthia McKinney speaks on Single-Player health care and racial health care disparities
More on health care:
Health, the environment, and the economy:

• Barack Obama and Joseph Biden
— reject Single-Payer.  They favor reforms that fall short of universal care, fail to reduce the high costs that Americans pay for health care compared to the rest of the world, and leave HMOs and insurance firms in control over health care.  The HMO and insurance industry profits by excluding people from coverage and limiting treatment for those who are covered.  Mr. Obama has taken major contributions from corporate HMO, insurance, and pharmaceutical contributors (

Labor & Economic Justice

• Cynthia McKinney and Rosa Clemente
— oppose ‘free trade’ agreements and unelected international trade authorities (NAFTA, CAFTA, WTO, GATT, ‘Fast Track’, etc.) that give corporate power and profit priority over labor rights and environmental protections; Ms. McKinney has voted against these agreements and advocates withdrawal.
— support democratic workplaces and repeal of the Taft-Hartley Act (restrictions on union organizing).
— support human rights protections and amnesty for undocumented immigrants, an end to raids, and tearing down the border wall.  They call the flood of new immigrants a result of economic policies and agreements (e.g., NAFTA) that impoverish people and drive them across borders.
— favor a strong safety net for middle- and low-income working people and families, with support for Main Street (small businesses and local economies) instead of Wall Street, and a massive transfer of federal funding from military contract and war spending to human needs.
Video: Cynthia McKinney on labor and corporations
Ms. McKinney on the economy

• Barack Obama and Joseph Biden
— support amended ‘free trade’ agreements and unelected international trade authorities; Mr. Biden voted for many such agreements and for ‘Fast Track’ presidential trade authority.
— are silent on Taft-Hartley.  The Democratic Party has failed to deliver for working people despite Election Year endorsements from unions.
— Favor immigration reform but Mr. Obama voted yes on the border wall and more border policing and surveillance.
— support many economic policies that favor the wealthy, major corporations, and Wall Street, with limited aid for poor and middle-income Americans.  Mr. Obama has praised the 1996 Welfare Reform Act signed by Bill Clinton, which severely hurt millions of Americans, especially women, during the recent economic downturn, and supports Bush-agenda ‘faith-based’ initiatives.  Mr. Biden helped draft the 2005 bankruptcy bill that gave credit-card companies and other financial institutions greater power over Americans facing economic difficulties.  See “Obama is flat-out kicking McCain’s ass when it comes to Wall Street contributions” (“Candidates for Sale” by Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone, August 21, 2008,

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