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Shocker: Here Comes The ‘Public Option’

From a cheering Los Angeles Times:

Proposed deficit remedy: the healthcare ‘public option’

A group of House Democrats seeks to revive the idea of offering a government insurance plan. The reasoning: ‘Because it saves so much money.’

July 21, 2010|By Noam N. Levey, Tribune Washington Bureau

Reporting from Washington — As both political parties worry about the growing federal deficit, an unlikely proposal is returning from last year’s divisive healthcare debate: the "public option."

Creating a major government health insurance program was roundly rejected last year, but 128 House Democrats are pushing to reconsider the idea, contending that it would hold down federal spending.

Their bill, which faces long odds, would allow Americans who do not get insurance at work to choose a government health plan starting in 2014.

"There is all this concern about the deficit," said Rep. Lynn Woolsey (D-Petaluma), a leading champion of the proposal. "Well, guess what: This would reduce the deficit because it saves so much money."

Woolsey and her allies, including Rep. Pete Stark (D-Fremont), are armed with a new analysis by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. Democrats say the CBO projects that the public option could save the government $68 billion between 2014 and 2020.

A CBO “analysis” they ordered.

The government’s administrative costs would be lower than private insurers’, proponents say, and it could pay hospitals and doctors less. That would mean lower premiums — and lower government subsidies for policyholders who need them.

Insurance companies, hospitals and other businesses say a public option would undermine employer-provided insurance and set the stage for a so-called single-payer system, in which the government would be the only insurer.

Nor are Republican budget hawks likely to sign on — even though the projected savings coincidently match what the leading House GOP healthcare proposal would have generated, according to the CBO.

And with a full plate of legislative business, House Democratic leaders have little interest in restarting a healthcare debate that split their own ranks.

Woolsey said she is willing to wait. "This will be there for the next Congress," she said.

Gee, what a surprise, huh?

Remember that this bill is waiting in the wings when NOvember rolls around.

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, July 22nd, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

2 Responses to “Shocker: Here Comes The ‘Public Option’”

  1. Rusty Shackleford says:

    ‘T’will be but a matter of time. I work for a large company and have healthcare benefits that I pay into. I just had surgery and the bill will be pretty much taken care of. I pay a very high premium and I’m glad to do it.

    Now, with this new abomination of a plan, I would’ve been told to wait until the pain was severe, or worse, just “given a pill” and told to go home. But worse than that, what is about to happen in the coming years is my company won’t pay their part of the premium, opting instead to pay the fine.

    Straight-line economics. All by design, all intentional. How to rook the public out of a good thing.

    And, for the record, I didn’t have any healthcare benefits from when I got out of the military until almost ten years later when I got hired by the large corporation. Now, all that is going to go away.

    Thanks government. Why is it that every time you stick your fingers into something, it gets worse?

    Hand me that “intellectual superior” BS again….would you? I’d like to tell you where to put it.

  2. proreason says:

    Shazam. Who could have seen this coming?


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