My life’s work as a doctor is based on one idea my parents taught me long ago -- that helping others is our highest calling. I see how so many patients struggle to afford care, and how so many Americans put off medical care because they fear they won’t be able to afford it. That’s why I made it a rule in my hospital practice -- if a patient doesn't have insurance, we don't seek payment. Between the decades I’ve spent treating patients in my practice and volunteering at a local free clinic, I have the firsthand experience to fight for Californians. In fact, if elected, I’d be the first doctor to ever serve as Insurance Commissioner.
Because of my firsthand experience, I support a Medicare for All system. First we need to protect the Affordable Care Act from Donald Trump’s attacks -- the law has helped millions of Californians and Americans get health care. I have seen the change in my own practice. But there is still more work to do, and I support Medicare For All to ensure every American has health care coverage.
Health care is a human right, and that’s one of the reasons I’m running in this race. As Insurance Commissioner, I will fight to broaden our limited definition of what healthcare includes:
I commit to you that I will not accept campaign contributions from health insurance and pharmaceutical companies. Those businesses are not my constituents -- you are. California is the largest insurance market in the country, dealing with hundreds of billions of dollars each year. What Californians need is an Insurance Commissioner who will fight for each of those dollars to go back to Californians in the form of high quality care, service, and protection.
In the last year, too many Californians faced the devastating consequences of wildfires, mudslides and earthquakes. These extreme events are only going to increase in intensity if we continue to ignore the impact of climate change. As a state, we need to make sure that we are dealing with the short, medium and long term.
First and foremost, we have to deal with the damage already created by the fires and mudslides. Californians can’t be left footing the bill. That means making sure that insurance companies are stepping up to pay for damage.
Plus, we need to make sure we are preparing for the future. In addition to pushing for legislation to reduce the severity of climate change, we have to make sure that new infrastructure can withstand future disasters, require that insurance company boards have climate competency, and that Californians have the proper insurance so that they are protected in the event of another emergency.
As a Muslim immigrant from this great blue state of CA, I’m a triple threat to Donald Trump. As the first Muslim ever elected to statewide office in California, I’m going to make him listen to the voices of all those people he is trying to silence.
My story is like so many Californians’. California has the largest number of immigrants of any state in this country. I’ll fight Donald Trump’s attacks on immigrants and stand up for all Californians -- regardless of their immigration status -- and I’ll defend all of our communities against his discriminatory attacks.
I say President Trump has it all wrong -- it’s time to get tough on hate. It’s time to fight hate and division, and instead build compassion and opportunity.