Hearing Health Care Activist Ady Barkan Was One of Tuesday’s Most Moving Moments

Ady Barkan, a health care activist who was diagnosed with the terminal neurodegenerative disease ALS four years ago, gave one of the most moving speeches of the second night of the Democratic National Convention.

After Barkan’s diagnosis in 2016, President Donald Trump signed a tax bill that threatened Barkan’s health insurance. Barkan traveled to Washington, DC, to advocate for single-payer health care. Though former Vice President Joe Biden has opposed Medicare for All, this evening Barkan made an impassioned plea to vote for him, as Trump’s administration asks the Supreme Court to invalidate Obamacare.

“Even during this terrible crisis, Donald Trump and Republican politicians are trying to take away millions of people’s health insurance,” Barkan said, speaking with help from a computer voice due to paralysis from the disease. “With the existential threat of another four years of this president, we all have a profound obligation to act, not only to vote, but to make sure that our friends, family, and neighbors vote as well.” 

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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