Dr. Ron Paul’s Campaign Manager Dies Uninsured, $400,000 in Debt

As the campaign manager for the presidential bid of Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), Kent Snyder received a lot of credit for raising $35 million from grassroots supporters, a phenomenal accomplishment for an insurgent campaign.

But, like 48 million other Americans, Snyder had no health insurance, and when he died from pneumonia on June 26 after a two-month hospital stay, he left medical bills totaling over $400,000.

It is emblematic of our age that Snyder’s boss, Rep. Paul, is a physician.

The story comes from the Washington Blade [that link is now inactive, here is an excerpt from the story published in the Daily Paul, a Paulestinian propaganda site – Editors, Sept. 14, 2011]:

Gay staffers from the Paul campaign, some speaking on condition that they not be identified, said they learned about Snyder’s unpaid medical bills from a web site created by his friends that calls on Paul supporters to contribute to a special fund to help Snyder’s family pay the bills, which come mostly from a two-month hospitalization. So far, the site (kentsnyder.com) has raised about $32,000.

“I can’t believe he didn’t have health insurance,” said one political activist who read about Snyder’s unpaid medical bills in a story published last month in the Wall Street Journal. “I can’t believe that Ron Paul didn’t give him health insurance,” said the activist, who asked not to be identified.

The Journal story did not identify Snyder as gay; a Washington Post obituary reported Snyder died of viral pneumonia but did not mention his sexual orientation.

Craig Max, a D.C. gay Republican activist who sought to become a Ron Paul delegate to the Republican National Convention, said news of Snyder’s death and his lack of health insurance has triggered a behind-the-scenes debate among Paul supporters and libertarian activists over whether or not the Paul campaign should have provided health insurance to its staff.

Update, Sept. 14, 2011: It would not be surprising if the excerpt about this story on the Daily Paul is scrubbed soon, so here is another contemporaneous link to this July 2008 story.

Update 2: We reacted to the renewed coverage of this story here.

H/t: Pam’s House Blend


15 thoughts on “Dr. Ron Paul’s Campaign Manager Dies Uninsured, $400,000 in Debt”

  1. Who would be responsible to pay the bill? If he has no wife or kids, then let the hospital eat the bill.

  2. i understand fully your point here on the insurance issue but can you please respond to all the good work that dr. paul is doing to expose the federal reserve crimes that are eroding your dollar value every day?????????????? how bout trying to protect your civil libertys from the gestapo punks emerging in our country, i mean all good what ya said but try a little positive plus side of the good dr. paul as punks like you never say a thing about the positive things dr. paul does shame on you and of course the new york times best seller the manifesto doesnt educate to many folks on economics as this is the only sane man left in washington give me a break later steve

  3. I feel bad for this guy. But our first priority as Americans should be to protect the investors in the insurance companies.

    The most important thing is profit and private ownership. If you have no insurance, that’s too bad. My investments have to be protected, regardless. Money comes first!

    The health care system in America is #1 in the world. Ask any insurance company executive. If you don’t have health care, it’s your own fault.

  4. A tragic, but all too typical story. With each passing day, it becomes more and more clear that what the United States needs and deserves is a Single Payer Health Care system — a system where everyone is in and no one is left out. With such a system in place, stories like this would become a thing of the past. Single Payer Health Care — Everyone In and No One Left Out.

  5. It is sad that so many people cannot see that the problems we are now facing in health care are due to the mess that government has been making for decades. What you are asking for is to prescribe more arsenic to cure arsenic poisoning.

    Health care is merely a service that one person provides to another. If the health care markets were allowed to operate like food markets or computer markets, the prices would be decreasing and there would not be a problem with people not being able to afford health care. Manipulation of the markets distorts every decision that people make.

    1. Dan – Please name another industrialized country where health care is provided successfully strictly on a free-market, non-regulated basis.

      Sorry, you can’t. There isn’t one. In the two European countries in which the public doesn’t cover health care costs, the private insurers are strictly regulated like utilities.

      When Bush rewrote the Iraqi constitution, he included the right to public health care coverage, which means US taxpayers are picking up the tab for the health insurance of 30 million Iraqis, while 50 million American citizens go without,and 45,000 Americans are dying every year as a result.

      The government didn’t screw this up. Private corporations did. The health plans could fix this crisis tomorrow if they wanted to. Nothing — nothing — is stopping them from insuring everybody, except their own greed.

  6. Um … I checked the RP campaign finance filings. Snyder doesn’t appear to have been on the salaried staff or paid at all. Since when do volunteers get health insurance?

    I take it back – was looking at the wrong filing. Looks like he was paid about $6K/month, or $72K/year. Seems like he could have afforded health insurance if he wanted to buy it.

  7. You would think this would be a good thing, uh, you know, getting to see your beloved maker, being in heaven and all. Like Martha Stewart says, “It’s a good thing!”

  8. Americans aren’t smart enough to deserve the universal health care most other developed countries enjoy. We are witnessing natural selection on a very large scale.

  9. Snyder didn’t die because he didn’t have health insurance. He died because he had pneumonia and never recovered. He was treated which is why there is a bill. What this has to do with Ron Paul’s views on healthcare is anyone’s guess.

  10. Interesting that the article claimed to exist does not exist at the link given. Me thinks there is a problem with the credibility here….

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