Monday night can sometimes be a slow night, but not last night, as Tampa City Councilwoman Mary Mulhern and candidates Carrie West and Jason Wilson all held their first major fundraisers for their 2011 candidacies. We'll write more on Mulhern and West later in the week, but we engaged Wilson, an emergency room doctor at Tampa General Hospital, about health care issues, what with a Federal Judge in Virginia (a George W. Bush appointee) calling the requirement in the law that mandates that everyone must buy insurance to be unconstitutional.
The 32-year-old emergency room physician at Tampa General, who says two local public officials he respects most are Pat Frank and Ed Homan, said he's not really ideological, and that's why he was completely turned off when he went with a group of doctors to meet up with Attorney General Bill McCollum in Tallahassee earlier this year, right after the health care bill passed.
McCollum declared emphatically that he was going to sue the federal government. "I thought it was the most polarizing, revolting type of speech I ever heard. Whether you are for the reform or not for the reform, I was appalled at that kind of speech." Like many legal analysts, Wilson said he's sure that the case will ultimately end up before the U.S. Supreme Court.
He said he certainly doesn't consider the bill extreme at all, saying "there's not anything revolutionary in there." He mentioned several provisions he liked, and some he wasn't so enthusiastic about, such as when it comes to taking money out of Medicare that could directly affect hospitals and physicians. "They're already scared of the federal government,," he said of some doctors recalcitrance about the bill, "and engaging physicians is like engaging cats."
"My only issue with this bill is that it doesn't give us more access to health care, but is more about health insurance," he added.