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Lyndon Johnson on Health Care


Signed Medicare bill to avoid family financial disasters

President Johnson was scheduled to sign the Medicaire bill on July 30, 1965. Johnson said, "No longer will older Americans be denied the healing miracle of modern medicine. No longer will illness crush and destroy the savings that they have so carefully put away over a lifetime so that they might enjoy dignity in their later years. No longer will young families see their own incomes, and their own hopes, eaten away simply because they are carrying out their deep moral obligations to their parents."
Source: Critical, by Tom Daschle, p. 62-63 , Feb 19, 2008

Advancing the Nation's Health: expand Medicare

The President sent to the Hill a special message entitled "Advancing the Nation's Health." Johnson had a favorite phrase for his administration. He was, he liked to say, "the education President and the health President."

These were the down-to-earth needs that came naturally. As a senator, he had opposed federal medical systems. But as President, Johnson's personal sentiment for a program like Medicare coincided with building national support.

Medicare had its expected enemies--conservatives and private insurance companies--but its serious problem was that peculiarly potent antagonist, the American Medical Association, which excoriated it as "socialized medicine."

Source: Tragedy of Lyndon Johnson, by Eric F. Goldman, p.285-286 , Mar 1, 1974

Child health program: prenatal care thru child's first year

Better health for our children--all of our children--is essential if we are to have a better America. American medicine--with the very strong support and cooperation of public resources-has produced a phenomenal decline in the death rate from many of the dread diseases. But it is a shocking fact that, in saving the lives of babies, America ranks 15th among the nations of the world. And among children, crippling defects are often discovered too late for any corrective action. This is a tragedy that Americans can, and Americans should, prevent.

I shall, therefore, propose a child health program to provide, over the next 5 years, for families unable to afford it--access to health services from prenatal care of the mother through the child's first year.

When we do that you will find it is the best investment we ever made because we will get these diseases in their infancy and we will find a cure in a great many instances that we can never find by overcrowding our hospitals when they are grown.

Source: Pres. Johnson's 1968 State of the Union message to Congress , Jan 17, 1968

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Other past presidents on Health Care: Lyndon Johnson on other issues:
Former Presidents:
George W. Bush(R,2001-2009)
Bill Clinton(D,1993-2001)
George Bush Sr.(R,1989-1993)
Ronald Reagan(R,1981-1989)
Jimmy Carter(D,1977-1981)
Gerald Ford(R,1974-1977)
Richard Nixon(R,1969-1974)
Lyndon Johnson(D,1963-1969)
John F. Kennedy(D,1961-1963)
Dwight Eisenhower(R,1953-1961)
Harry S Truman(D,1945-1953)

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V.P.Al Gore
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Sen.Bob Dole
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Page last updated: Feb 20, 2014