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As the 2008 presidential race revs up, the healthcare crisis is taking center stage. A pivotal moment came during an August 2007 Democratic presidential debate in Illinois—when retired steelworker Steve Skvara asked a crucial question. "After 34 years with LTV Steel, I was forced to retire because of a disability. Two years later, LTV filed bankruptcy. I lost a third of my pension, and my family lost their healthcare," he said. "Every day of my life, I sit at the kitchen table across from the woman who devoted 36 years of her life to my family, and I can't afford to pay for her healthcare. What's wrong with America, and what will you do to change it?"

Michael says when Steve asked that question, everyone in the stadium stood up and cheered. "And [they weren't] just applauding you for having the courage to say what you said, but they're standing for themselves and for all the millions of others," he says. "That's our story, too."

After that emotional moment, Steve was contacted by a woman whose fiancé is the head of a medical group. "When she saw my interview, she talked to her fiancé, and his medical group is providing my wife with the first full physical she's had in seven years," he says. "And I'd like to thank them at this time and you for this show, because it's not about a retiree and his wife. It's about almost 50 million people in this country that are doing without."

Oprah says Sicko brings to light a question that could define us as Americans. "This film speaks to the question of, Who do we want to be?" Oprah says. "Where do we really stand on this issue?"
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FROM: Sick in America: It Can Happen to You
Published on January 01, 2006

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