First, it is not 50 million. It is closer to 46 million.
2nd, it is not always the same people being uninsured. The CBO says that 45 percent of those uninsured at any point in time will be insured within four months.
3rd, not all of the uninsured need a new government program. The Urban Institute found that 25 percent of the uninsured already qualify for existing government health insurance programs. Blue Cross Blue Shield reports similar numbers.
4th, more than 17 million of the uninsured make at least $50,000 per year (the median household income of $50,233) – 8.4 million make $50,000 to $74,999 per year and 9.1 million make $75,000 or higher. Why are they uninsured? I don't know.
5th, nearly 10 million (9.7) of the 45.7 million uninsured are “not a citizen.” Whether or not you and I have a responsibility to these people can be debated.
So the Gorilla is more like 300 lbs. That's still a pretty big gorilla.
I work for the largest Catholic health care system in the US. I am not taking sides in the debate, but only pointing out that in having the debate, we need to be much more careful with the numbers we throw around. When an average citizen uses this number, it's simply because they are ill-informed. But any politician or person who is knowledgeable of the health care industry and uses this number, is a damned liar.