The numbers are staggering. According to a newly released study by researchers at UCLA, 24% of Californians now say they don’t have health insurance.California's uninsured is more than the entire population of Virginia. Two million people in the state lost their insurance over the last three years, just in California alone. If this health care plan is defeated, that number will rise dramatically.
That means that 8.2 million residents of the state are crossing their fingers and hoping they don’t require medical care, a jump of nearly 2 million from 2007.
Why have the numbers grown so precipitously? In part, because of unemployment:
The number of uninsured has swelled in tandem with California’s unemployment rate, which rose to 12.3% in December from 5.7% two years earlier, and as employers shifted more healthcare costs to employers.This is the private sector at work. Without the intervention of a government plan, it’s not hard to see where this trend line will continue to move. Insurance companies are poised to raise rates by double digit percentages. Employers will pass on those costs, or drop plans altogether. As a result, more employees will simply go without.
What happens when your company decides to drop health insurance coverage altogether?
You think the Teabaggers give a damn?
[UPDATE 11:42 PM] Bonus depressing fact: The 10 least populated states in the US combined equal about 8.9 million Americans. The number of uninsured just in California alone is 8.2 million.
The 8.9 million Americans in the ten least populated states in the nation get 20 Senate votes. The 8.2 million uninsured in California get 2.
Wonder why there's no public option? There's your answer.