To some Americans, House passage of the Affordable Health Care for America Act represented necessary progress toward reform of a health care system which prices the nation's poorest out of the market. To others, it represented yet another lost opportunity to put market values back into the health care equation. To Julie Stone, Saturday's vote was a call to action that she couldn't ignore.
"The people of Missouri's 1st District deserve more than a party-line vote on health care from Lacy Clay," Stone told a group of Libertarians and Republicans before the St. Louis County Libertarian Central Committee's monthly meeting Wednesday evening, by way of announcing her candidacy to replace Clay in Congress in next November's election. "They deserve a representative who stands up for their rights instead of supporting a massive transfer of wealth from their pockets to the insurance industry's bottom line with DC's political class as the middlemen."
"My political involvement has always been about standing up for the little guy," says Stone, 34, of Riverview, who works as an administrative assistant. "From absurd local occupancy permit practices to small-business-killing smoking ordinances, to federal laws that say you'll fork over for health insurance you may not need or want, or pay a fine. Big government at every level is killing the American dream. It's going to take Libertarians in Congress to turn things around - and having said that, my conscience requires me to make it happen. I, Julie Stone, am running to represent Missouri's 1st US House District in the 112th Congress."
Stone serves as the Libertarian Party's St. Ferdinand Township committeewoman and as vice chair of the party's county committee. Local issues - issues like the Black Jack city government's denial of an occupancy permit to an unmarried couple -- fired her up for involvement in politics. After seeking election to the state legislature in 2006, she worked in opposition to, and several times addressed the county council concerning, the smoking ban which about 13% of registered voters imposed on the county on November 3rd as "Proposition N."
The Libertarian Party is America's -- and Missouri's -- third largest political party. Hundreds of Libertarians around the nation serve in local, state and federal office.