Benjamin Disraeli, the Prime Minister of Great Britain in the late 1800s, once said: “The health of the people is really the foundation upon which all their happiness and all their powers as a state depends.” In other words, the healthier the population, the happier and stronger their country. By extension, the economy would be stronger and more productive.

Why, then, do we see the president doing his best to undercut the health care of those unable or barely able to afford health insurance? Why, then, has Maine’s governor prevented the expansion of Medicaid?

Rural hospitals are having trouble staying open and are eliminating various services. Opioid addiction is going untreated in the populations most affected. For every undeserving jobless layabout, there are plenty of families just scraping by — their children doing without preventive care.

The Maine Medical Association and the Maine Hospital Association have both endorsed passage of Question 2, which would expand Medicaid coverage in Maine. Thirty-one other states have done so, some of which have Republican administrations, and none has backed out of the arrangement during the past few years.

On Nov. 7, I hope other will join me in making Maine number 32. Some will be unhappy, but I bet the majority will appreciate the expansion of health care, and Maine will become a healthier, happier and more powerful state.

Edward Walworth, Lewiston

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