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HMOs: Bush Backtracks on His Own Policies

March 27, 2004

Re "Patients' Right to Sue HMOs Before High Court," March 24: How does President Bush justify urging the Supreme Court to void the right-to-sue provision after bragging during a debate with Al Gore about having enacted the Texas law? And after administration lawyers argued their case, the White House claimed that Bush's position was "compatible" with his position as governor, to allow "patients a fair process for challenging the decisions of health insurers without needlessly driving up healthcare costs." That is decidedly not the position Bush took during the campaign.

This leaves me feeling as if I am in the presence of the great Wizard of Oz, being urged to "pay no attention to the man behind the curtain." Let's hope the Bush charade ends in November.

Charlotte Costello

Fountain Valley

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Someone must be having a memory lapse if the president is claiming responsibility for the Texas Patients' Bill of Rights. That legislation became law without his signature.

Albert P. Cohen

Snow Hill, Md.

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"U.S. Officials Drop Wildlife Protections From Forest Plan" (March 24) was buried in the paper. Bush is giving the lumber companies increased profits from our "protected" old-growth redwood forests as well as encouraging his "lumber giants" to increasingly ruin our water.

Almost every utterance by Bush during the 2000 campaign has been abrogated. Bush swore that he would make it possible for patients to sue their HMOs, yet now he countermands that. Mercury is so prevalent and dangerous that even the Food and Drug Administration issued consumer prohibitions, yet Bush lowered coal companies' requirements on mercury and allows them to "buy" their way out of improvements.

Are we so immune to Bush's attacks on our environment that we don't even wiggle when hooked?

Syd Brown

Los Osos

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