When hopes are dashed



To the Editor:

I fully support Project Hope, which seeks help for persons with opioid addictions rather than criminal prosecutions.

In fact, I spontaneously made a cash contribution at the ceremony in Ellsworth that unveiled the project. A key element helpful in Massachusetts, where Project Hope started, has been the 97 percent insurance coverage achieved through full implementation of “RomneyCare” and “ObamaCare.” This helps protect hospitals and clinics from having to absorb the costs of unreimbursed care.

Therefore it strengthens their ability to expand treatment for victims of the rapidly growing opioid crisis.

In one of life’s ironies, the Gloucester, Mass.-police chief who helped start the first of these programs has been suspended and may be fired for withholding information about an unrelated matter.

I wonder whether a similar fate will occur for State Sen. Brian Langley (R-Ellsworth). He proudly helped announce his support for the Hancock County Project Hope. But he neglected to mention his crucial vote against accepting federal funds for extending MaineCare. (He and one other kept the State Senate from the two-thirds vote required to override Gov. Paul LePage’s veto.)

Thus he helped create a deep health care hole for tens of thousands of Maine citizens whose incomes are too low to qualify for insurance help under the Affordable Care Act.

I know that Langley is well known and personally popular in Ellsworth. But thoughtful citizens should check out his voting record in Augusta before casting their ballots on Nov. 8.

His opponent, Moira O’Neill, is a nurse and Husson University teacher who fully understands these and many other important issues.

Bill Skocpol

Mount Desert

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