No one knows Medicaid and Medicare better than doctor Mark Berg. Mark Berg was a practicing physician who saw Medicaid up close and personal. He understands what happens when the government interferes in health care. That’s exactly why he chose the difficult path of running in primary against a 22 year incumbent. He wanted to stop the expansion of medicaid and Obamacare into Virginia because Dr. Berg had actually read the entire Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare as it is more commonly known. Berg knew what was coming for Virginians, and how much it would cost. He had the courage to take on a well entrenched incumbent to do everything he could to prevent medicaid expansion from happening to Virginians. Dr. Berg won the primary by 81 votes and went on to win the general election by 30%.
During the last legislative session, his attention to detail would prove invaluable. Berg is an incredibly conscientious delegate who makes a point of reading as many pieces of legislation as possible before voting on them. Before he was elected he spent his time reading up on the MIRC and attending MIRC meetings. Having seen the weakness of MIRC, this was an issue he was focused on during the budget discussions. He saw enough in the budget that allowed Medicaid expansion to vote against HB 5002 when it was first passed. Following the session he spent hundreds of hours analyzing the budget, and digging into budget information, to try to keep Medicaid expansion from happening in Virginia. Over the three months between the original passage of HB 5002 and the passage of the Black amendment, he was the one legislator who worked regularly with The Bull Elephant team. Berg saw what we saw, the budget allowed the Governor to expand Medicaid on his own, without the General Assembly.
The hard work and teamwork of Del. Berg was invaluable in the #BlackorBust movement. In a post on his Legislative Assistant’s Facebook wall, Willie Deutsch, Sen. Black stated,
“This victory is due, in large part, to you and Delegate Mark Berg. I couldn’t have done it without your help. You’re rock stars!”
In a recent fundraising appeal Susan Stimpson expressed similar feelings about Delegate Berg,
Mark Berg is someone worthy of a portion of your hard-earned treasure. He won his seat in the House of Delegates just this past November against all odds. He was up against a popular incumbent who was very much a part of the Inner Ring. He is a quiet warrior. Humble. And very dedicated to doing what is right and what is just. Without his help and knowledge, we would not have been successful in our #BlackorBust effort, where we used our grassroots unity of effort to add transparency to the budgeting process, stopping games that were being played by our leaders to leave a back door open for Medicaid Expansion.”
When leadership and fellow house members were telling Del. Berg and the team at The Bull Elephant that our concerns were crazy, Del. Berg stood strong. He kept asking questions and kept insisting that the questionable parts of the legislation needs to be addressed before Republicans should pass the budget.
It is rare that a Delegate we send to Richmond to fight for the grassroots continues to stand up for us against such pressure. It was an honor to be able to work with Del. Berg in this fight. He is a rare legislator, and the grassroots needs to support him.
There is an important fundraising deadline for Del. Berg coming up on June 30th. A mere two days away. His courage has made him a target. He won his primary by a mere 81 votes. The grassroots needs to send a strong message that they will support a Delegate who stands with them. Please take a moment and join me in making a donation to Del. Berg with a donation of $50.00, $100.00, $250.00, or any amount. There are few races in Virginia this year, and by taking action now we can make sure Del. Berg is in a strong position to win reelection in 2015.
Mark Berg is a rare Delegate, one who represents the people and does what is best for us, even when difficult. He deserves our support. Please consider donating to his campaign, in any amount. Every little bit helps legislators like Mark Berg to remain in office, representing us, the people of Virginia.