Sen. Lisa Murkowski speaks out against health care reform bill

ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- Traveling the state talking about health care reform can't be the most appealing way to spend a summer break. 

But that's how Alaska's senior senator Lisa Murkowski plans to spend her August recess, and it began Tuesday with a couple of events in Anchorage.

Murkowski visited the Anchorage Neighborhood Health Center, one of the only places in town currently accepting new Medicare patients. 

"The support that is given here at this facility is continuous, it is supportive, and it is quality care," Murkowski said.

Murkowski said she voted against the health care reform bill that came through one of the committees she sits on. 

She says she fears the cost, as well as potential impacts on those who like their private insurance. 

"The fact of the matter is that in order to pay for a trillion dollar-plus bill, or even if they can get it down to just $900 billion, it's going to come from us," Murkowski said.  

Absent from Tuesday's meeting was the rancor of rallies that occurred on the streets Monday. 

The anger and claims of socialized medicine are being played out in town hall meetings across the country. 

Former Gov. Sarah Palin was among those with harsh words about the reform plans. 

On her Facebook page she made the following statement: "The America I know and love is not one in which my parents or my baby with Down syndrome will have to stand in front of Obama's death panel so his bureaucrats can decided whether they are worthy of health care. Such a system is downright evil." 

Murkowski says some are taking the criticism too far. 

"It does us no good to incite fear in people by saying that there's these end of life provisions, these death panels -- quite honestly, I'm so offended at that terminology because it absolutely isn't there," Murkowski said. "There is no reason to gin up fear in the American public by saying things that are not included in the bill." 

Murkowski says actual provisions in the bill are bad enough, and that there is no need to make things up. 

Murkowski has five town hall meetings on health care planned around Alaska this month.

By:  By Jason Moore. Originally aired by KTUU on August 11, 2009