Max Baucus’ Senate Finance Committee released the “draft proposal” of its version of a healthcare reform bill. NOT in the proposal was the “government option” sought by President Obama and the country’s progressives. The progressives had long argued that the most cost-effective way to bring comprehensive medical care to all Americans was a “single-payer’ plan.
Republicans claimed that, regardless of whatever other reforms they might support, even if unenthusiastically, a “government option” component would condemn any package and garner solid GOP opposition. Solid Republican opposition has been from the start something the White House wanted at all costs to avoid. What it wanted, at all costs, was a plan that could genuinely be labeled as bi-partisan.
But the kick to the groin that was delivered today by at least 10 Democratic senators, according to the Washington Post, was their rationale: “It would be unfair to private insurers.” While I don’t have the full list of the 10, here are the names of seven I know of: Max Baucus (MT), Ben Nelson (NE), Ron Wyden (OR), Mark Pryor and Blanche Lincoln (AR), Mary Landrieu (LA), and Tom Carper (DE).
Now that you have their names, I’m going to repeat what they said was the reason they eliminated a “government option,” but I’m going to repeat it in huge bold font.
It would be unfair to private insurers.