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Rice: It Can Happen To You

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Image of Andrew Rice

This is from state Sen. Andrew Rice (D-Oklahoma City), pictured right, who is running for the U.S. Senate this year against Republican incumbent Jim Inhofe:

My wife Apple and I were recently reminded why so many Americans are frustrated and anxious about health care.

Our 11-month old son Parker was hospitalized here in Oklahoma City for three days last November with pneumonia.  He received excellent care and, like most youngsters his age, he has rebounded very quickly from what was a scary time for all of us.  But, that is only half the story.

One month later we learned that our health insurance company was refusing to pay the $10,000 hospital bill because they said our baby Parker had a “pre-existing condition.”  I’m not kidding. When we argued that baseless reason away, they changed their excuse to “improper notification” by the treating physician, and said it was not a big deal because the hospital would just “write it off.” They don’t think it is a “big deal” to avoid providing the coverage we pay them for every month, and instead have the Oklahoma taxpayer foot the bill. That tells you something about how they see the world.

Not until they learned that Apple is a physician did the insurance company bureaucrats finally admit they had made a mistake and agreed to pay the legitimate claim.

It is a personal experience that too many Americans face every day, and it symbolizes why I’m running to be your next U.S. Senator.

The career politicians in Washington do not have the courage and integrity to reform this system, while 47 million Americans go uninsured and those of us who are insured must fight a system that is structured to deny claims first and ask questions later!

I want to be your U.S. Senator so I can take some Oklahoma common sense and values to Washington and change the culture of special interests that see everyday Americans as numbers and obstacles to their priorities. My background in Asia and Africa helping the poor and people suffering from HIV and as a divinity school student has guided my principles to stand up for the common good and be a voice for those who are invisible to the interests who think they own Washington.

I am dedicated to reducing the cost of health care and improving access.  When Washington failed to pass S-CHIP into law that would have expanded health insurance coverage for low income children, I worked in the Oklahoma State Senate to expand health coverage to 38,000 children from low-income families.  In the U.S. Senate, I will continue this work and make health care more affordable for all.

I invite you to go to and support my campaign.  I’m in an uphill fight to change the status quo and I cannot do it alone. I also ask that you forward this email to at least 3 friends or colleagues, ask them to sign up to receive our emails, and help spread our campaign for reform. As we are seeing across the country, people are hungry for change, but the status quo is not going to go away easily.

My best to you and your family,

Andrew Rice

State Senator

P.S. I would like to hear about your experiences with your health insurance company. Please send in your story! And do not hesitate to visit my campaign website and sign up to volunteer or contribute.