Center for American Progress

Prospects for Children’s Health Coverage in 2007
Press Advisory

Prospects for Children’s Health Coverage in 2007

Chairman John Dingell and Senator Gordon Smith discuss their plans for SCHIP

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On March 29, 2007, Center for American Progress will host a discussion on SCHIP with Energy and Commerce Chairman John Dingell and Senator Gordon Smith of the Finance Committee. The conversation moderated by Senator Tom Daschle is being held to accompany the ongoing discussion regarding SCHIP funding.

Opening Remarks:
John Podesta, President and CEO, Center for American Progress

Featured Participants:
Chairman John Dingell (D-MI)
Senator Gordon Smith (R-OR)

Senator Tom Daschle, Distinguished Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress

Thursday, March 29, 2007
Program: 9:30am to 10:30am
Admission is free.

RSVP for this Event

Center for American Progress
1333 H St. NW, 10th Floor
Washington, DC 20005
Map & Directions

Nearest Metro: Blue/Orange Line to McPherson Square or Red Line to Metro Center


Chairman John Dingell, over the last five decades, has developed a sound reputation as a champion for working families who keep America’s economy strong; a crusader for our nation’s natural heritage; and the leading voice in Congress for making health care affordable and accessible to all families. Because of his work for constituents in Monroe County and parts of Wayne and Washtenaw counties, and as the Chairman of the influential Committee on Energy and Commerce, Chairman Dingell is known throughout Michigan and the nation for his effectiveness and foresight.

Chairman Dingell has written some of the best known laws protecting our health and our environment, as well as the rights of workers and consumers. One notable example is the 1990 Clean Air Act which is credited with cleaning up the air we breathe while preserving American competitiveness. He fought for the passage of revolutionary legislation such as the Endangered Species Act, as well as laws that address America‘s most pressing needs like the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and the Mammography Quality Standards Act.

Chairman Dingell also took a leading role in creating the “Do Not Call” list in 2003 to help families stop unwanted telemarketing and remains vigilant in his pursuit of a “Patients Bill of Rights” which will ensure patients’ care is in the hands of doctors, not HMO’s and insurance companies. At the beginning of every session of Congress, Chairman Dingell introduces the national health insurance bill his father sponsored when he was a Member. December 13, 2005 marked Chairman Dingell’s 50th anniversary in the US House. Only one other House Member has served as long?Jamie Whitten (MS).

Senator Gordon Smith has focused on issues crucial to America‘s health care safety net since coming to the Senate in 1997. Senator Smith’s seat on the Finance Committee has uniquely positioned him to be a leading advocate to protect coverage for low-income individuals through Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), and to make coverage more affordable and accessible for small businesses and the uninsured. Senator Smith also has sponsored a number of initiatives that will increase flexibility for state programs like the Oregon Health Plan.

As a member of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, Senator Smith has initiated discussions on ways to strengthen Medicare, Medicaid, and public/private retirement programs, and to expose companies that prey on seniors with marketing scams. During his tenure as Chairman in the 109th Congress, Smith also worked to spotlight issues such as long-term care, retirement security, disaster preparedness, America‘s guardianship system and conducted stringent oversight over federal programs such as implementation of Medicare Part D. As Ranking Member of the committee in the 110th Congress, Senator Smith will continue his work to protect seniors and ensure the long term sustainability of entitlement programs.

Smith’s foray into politics began in 1992, when he was elected to the Oregon State Senate. His colleagues recognized his leadership abilities by electing him minority leader, and then president of the State Senate during his first term in office. Upon his election to the United States Senate, Smith became the first U.S. Senator from eastern Oregon since 1938.

Tom Daschle is a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. Senator Daschle’s work for the Center focuses on health care policy and global economic, security, and health issues. Senator Daschle is also a member of the Global Alliances’ steering committee, an international coalition of progressive leaders dedicated to the development and exchange of progressive policy ideas.

In addition to his work at the Center, Senator Daschle is also a visiting professor at the Georgetown University‘s Public Policy Institute, conducting student seminars, guest lectures in classrooms, and holding public discussions related to politics and policymaking.

Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1978, Tom Daschle served there until 1986 when he was elected to the U.S. Senate from South Dakota. He became Minority Leader of the Senate in 1994 and Majority Leader in 2001. He was the second longest serving Democratic leader in history. Daschle now serves as a Senior Policy Advisor in the Washington office of the law firm Alston and Bird.

Senator Daschle attended South Dakota State University and graduated in 1969. He served for three years as an intelligence officer in the U.S. Air Force Strategic Command