Bill Ritter on Health Care


2007 Colorado Promise: end the crisis of the uninsured

Many progressives need to relearn the art of talking up government. Colorado governor Bill Ritter said at his inauguration:

"Let's fulfill the Colorado Promise by ending the crisis of the uninsured and enacting comprehensive health-care reform. Let's fulfill the Colorado Promise by creating good jobs and fixing our transportation system. And by being stubborn stewards of our land, our air, our water and our wildlife.

"Let's fulfill the Colorado Promise by living up to our part of the social compact Such an important part of who we are as a state, and really as a nation, is the social compact--the covenant that says government exists for the people, for all people. It exists to provide legitimate public functions. It exists to ensure we take care of seniors, and the disabled, and for those who struggle mightily--whatever the reason. Government has a responsibility to intersect with their struggle, looking always for ways to improve the quality of their lives."

Source: Obama`s Challenge, by Robert Kuttner, p. 91-92 , Aug 25, 2008

Provide Coloradans some basic form of health care by 2010

My long-term vision is to establish a Colorado Health Plan that provides every Coloradan with access to some basic form of health insurance and health care by 2010. I look forward to solving this crisis with the legislature and the new “208” Health Commission. In the short term, we can make immediate progress by joining a multi-state drug-purchasing pool, and we can do it while still protecting vulnerable populations. This will be one of my first executive orders.
Source: 2004 State of the State Address , Jan 11, 2007

Basic health care accessible to all Coloradans

    As Governor, I will lead an effort to bring all parties together to develop the Colorado Health Plan. The Plan will improve health care access, quality and affordability and promote healthy lifestyle choices. The process will be guided by eight fundamental principles:
  1. Basic health care should be available and accessible to all Coloradans.
  2. Health care for the 180,000 uninsured children should be an immediate priority.
  3. Health care should be affordable and financed in a cost-effective manner.
  4. Quality health care should be available and accessible regardless of geography.
  5. Health care reform must be developed collaboratively.
  6. Medicaid must become more efficient and effective.
  7. We should foster competition as a means to drive quality up and costs down.
  8. We all must take personal responsibility for our own health.
Source: Campaign website, www.ritterforgovernor.com, “Issues” , Nov 7, 2006

Adopt national health reform legislation before the end of the year.

Ritter signed a letter from 22 Governors to Congressional leaders:

In a letter to congressional leadership, 22 governors are urging federal lawmakers to adopt national health reform legislation before the end of the year to provide families and businesses with much-needed security and stability.

"We commend you and your colleagues for provisions included in your bills that will help states," the governors wrote. "Many of the provisions will allow states to achieve long term savings and help cover those who currently go without health coverage. We recognize that health reform is a shared responsibility and everyone, including state governments, needs to partner to reform our broken health care system."

"Efforts at the federal level, like the recent and critical investments that support states' HIV and prevention initiatives, are beginning the work to lower health care costs. Our citizens and our states, however, will only achieve the health care security and stability they need if we succeed in working together to achieve health care reform."

Source: Letter from CO Gov. Bill Ritter and 21 other Governors 10-GOV1 on Oct 1, 2009

3.2% funding increase for National Institutes of Health.

Ritter signed Letter from 24 Governors to leaders in Congress

NIH, as well as the indirect job benefits of laboratories needing space, supplies, services, and equipment. We are also deeply aware that NIH-funded discoveries are the basis of new companies and even new industries in our communities.

NIH research is an instrumental part of the success of the US life sciences industry and its 6 million high-wage US jobs. Moreover, follow-on life science research advances are now stimulating new jobs and new solutions in green energy, agriculture, the environment and industrial manufacturing. NIH funding enables the scientific talent and discoveries that are at the heart of this vast array of economic activity.

As you develop the Congressional Budget Resolution, we urge you to enable the 3.2% funding increase for NIH contained in the President's budget request. We thank you for your past support for biomedical research and ask you to craft a budget resolution that accommodates the President's $32.2 billion FY 2011 NIH budget request.

The greatest contribution NIH makes is to the health and well-being of Americans. Past federal investments in medical research, combined with those from the private sector, have led to improved health, better quality of life, and improved productivity of millions of patients and their families.

But NIH is also an important national, regional, and local economic engine. Together, our states received more than $19 billion from the NIH last year for promising research efforts. NIH funding directly supports 350,000 jobs across the US. In our states, we see firsthand the world class research institutions and scientific teams enabled by

Source: Letter from 24 Governors to leaders in Congress 100413-Gov on Apr 13, 2010

Other governors on Health Care: Bill Ritter on other issues:
CO Gubernatorial:
John Hickenlooper
CO Senatorial:
Mark Udall
Michael Bennet

Newly seated 2010:
NJ Chris Christie
VA Bob McDonnell

Term-limited as of Jan. 2011:
AL Bob Riley
CA Arnold Schwarzenegger
GA Sonny Perdue
HI Linda Lingle
ME John Baldacci
MI Jennifer Granholm
NM Bill Richardson
OK Brad Henry
OR Ted Kulongoski
PA Ed Rendell
RI Donald Carcieri
SC Mark Sanford
SD Mike Rounds
TN Phil Bredesen
WY Dave Freudenthal
Newly Elected Nov. 2010:
AL: Robert Bentley (R)
CA: Jerry Brown (D)
CO: John Hickenlooper (D)
CT: Dan Malloy (D)
FL: Rick Scott (R)
GA: Nathan Deal (R)
HI: Neil Abercrombie (D)
IA: Terry Branstad (R)
KS: Sam Brownback (R)
ME: Paul LePage (R)
MI: Rick Snyder (R)
MN: Mark Dayton (D)
ND: Jack Dalrymple (R)
NM: Susana Martinez (R)
NV: Brian Sandoval (R)
NY: Andrew Cuomo (D)
OH: John Kasich (R)
OK: Mary Fallin (R)
PA: Tom Corbett (R)
RI: Lincoln Chafee (I)
SC: Nikki Haley (R)
SD: Dennis Daugaard (R)
TN: Bill Haslam (R)
VT: Peter Shumlin (D)
WI: Scott Walker (R)
WY: Matt Mead (R)
Civil Rights
Foreign Policy
Free Trade
Govt. Reform
Gun Control
Health Care
Homeland Security
Social Security
Tax Reform

Contact info:
Email Contact Form
Fax number:
Search for...

Page last updated: Nov 21, 2011