Mr Taylor has made it very clear that he is opposed to the Obama administration’s plan to reform healthcare, because it costs too much.

He wants to see the inefficiencies in the existing system reformed first.

Mr Taylor is what is called a blue dog Democrat – one of an influential group of conservative leaning democrats in Congress who are deeply concerned by government spending and the spiralling national debt.

“Now everyone in this room is aware that I’m not going to vote for the healthcare plan,” says the congressman, to loud applause.



At the Bethel free health care clinic, set up in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, which devastated Mississippi’s Gulf Coast, people without health insurance are treated by volunteers.

The centre is funded by donations.

In the clinic I spoke to Vicky MacArthur, who has come because she needs medication to keep her blood pressure down.

She lost her health insurance when she became unemployed.

I asked Ms MacArthur what she made of the government’s plan to help Americans like her.

“There’s no way the government is going to provide a service like this,” she told me.

“This clinic is run by people who care. I can just picture people standing in lines, you don’t get to pick who your doctor is.

“It just sounds like communism, that you just have to do what they say to do if you’re sick.”


Amazing. Only in the South, huh?

I wonder how insane this must look to the rest of the developed world…people committing health care kamikaze in the name of rugged individualism. I wonder if there even could be a uninsured ‘tipping point’ with these people? Even if 75% of their community was uninsured, would they still hold fast? I almost think they might. Ideology is some potent stuff.