Democratic candidate Kathryn Allen doesn’t want her campaigning to turn negative now that the Republican primary for the 3rd Congressional District seat has determined her November opponent.
She has tried to maintain a positive campaign so far, Allen said, and her health care town halls are one way she tries to do that.
Allen was at the Provo City Library on Wednesday night to present, alongside other medical doctors, about modern health care.
“We really do want to help educate the public about how complex this issue is and discuss with different experts what can be done to improve healthcare in this country,” Allen said.
Allen’s stance on her centerpiece issue — health care — is vastly different from her probable November opponent.
Republican John Curtis, who was unofficially declared the winner Tuesday night in a contest against fellow Republicans Tanner Ainge and Chris Herrod, has maintained throughout his campaign that the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, should be repealed.
“He wants to repeal Obamacare,” said Allen, a longtime practicing physician. “I want to fix it, or find something better.”
When asked by one of the approximately 30 people attending about what path she would suggest taking to reach a single-payer health care system, Allen suggested gathering the data to show that it’s a more efficient system.
“We are not going to eliminate the private market immediately,” Allen said. “You can see what a complex problem it is.”
Allen mentioned a piece of legislation that would transition the nation to a single-payer health care system over the course of 10 years and buyout the health insurance companies — which she said oversimplifies a complicated problem.
But she said, it may be necessary, as the health insurance companies would not go quietly.
“But we have to have the political will to do it,” Allen said. “And my will is there. I’ve lived in the trenches, and I know what it’s like to take care for patients with no insurance, and to diagnose a disease when it’s too late. It’s a moral failing in this country not to take care of people right.”
Allen was also asked about her stance on medical marijuana.
She explained that, because marijuana is classified as a Schedule I drug by the federal government, it makes it hard to study its medical benefits.
But, she said, studies have been done privately with convincing evidence.
“So one of the things the federal government might consider doing is changing (marijuana’s scheudling) so we might do more research,” Allen said.
Marijuana is a safer option for treating pain than opiates are, Allen said, and if it works, it should be tried first.
Katie England is the South County and political reporter for the Daily Herald. She can be reached at 801-344-2599 or email@example.com.