A local activist has called for citizens to join him at noon Saturday, Feb. 27 on the corner of Union and Main Street in Rockland for a “Sidewalk Summit” to protest what he said is yet another proposed corporate bailout by the president and Congress.

The Rockland protest will be held in conjunction with other protests outside the White House and across the country in response to not having progressive health care representatives at President Obama’s Healthcare Summit on Thursday, Feb. 25 at the Blair House in Washington, D.C., said Jerry Call of South Thomaston.

Call is a spokesman for Maine Healthcare Reform.

Call said activists are protesting President Obama’s health insurance reform plan released on Feb. 22, saying it is another Wall Street and insurance industry giveaway to the tune of half a trillion dollars. They are also protesting the U.S. House’s proposed public option. The proposed public option is meant to provide people with an alternative to purchasing private insurance plans, when it becomes mandatory under the new law for everyone to purchase health insurance.

The problem, according to Call, is that the proposed public option, as written by Congress under the strong influence of the insurance industry, will cost more than a comparable private policy.

“The country did not vote for change, only to have the president and Congress bail out and subsidize insurance corporations at the expense of its citizens,” Call said in a news release. “If Maine’s representatives Chellie Pingree and Mike Michaud insist on supporting the current insurance industry designed public option, then they must be held accountable in November and 2012.”

“The insurance industry has embarked on a very timely and clever fear campaign of raising premiums as much as 38 percent; thus hoping to incite voters to demand quick passage of the health insurance reform legislation with the so-called public option, which voters mistakenly think will have the ability to hold down health care costs,” Call said.

The second and best solution, Call said, is to drop the proposed health care insurance bills in favor of a national universal health insurance program in which everyone contributes based on a progressive percentage of their income.

Legislation has already been developed under that name in the U.S. House bill HR676.

“The bottom line is, whichever solution you prefer; don’t let Chellie [Pingree] and Mike [Michaud] impose a worthless program like the public option on the American people,” Call said. “It’s really not that difficult, just stand up to the special interests.”