Latest in the continuing story on California Health plans...BD
SACRAMENTO -- Abandoning their facade of cooperation, a coalition of California labor unions and consumer groups says it is gearing up a campaign to discredit Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's healthcare proposal as too expensive for many workers. Organizers say they will trail Schwarzenegger throughout California to challenge and rebut him, hold prayer vigils and news conferences, press elected officials to oppose his proposal and run critical ads on television. They plan to deride the governor's program as the "Arnold Middle-Class Gouge.
But the campaign could backfire by turning voters against big changes to the state's healthcare system, including methods favored by unions. That might benefit Republican lawmakers, Blue Cross of California and business groups that have opposed a wholesale overhaul along the lines envisioned by Schwarzenegger and Democratic leaders. "There is a chance the voters might say, 'This is all too complicated and let's wait,' " said Mark Baldassare, president of the Public Policy Institute of California, a nonpartisan research group.