Dems Introduce 852 Page Health Care Bill
The Democrats have introduced an 852 page health care bill. First off, we'd get a Health Czar and another federal agency:
Under the House bill, health insurance would be regulated by a powerful new federal agency, headed by a presidential appointee known as the health choices commissioner.
And we'd get a public health plan, that will be opposed by insurance companies, Republicans, business owners and doctors. Why doctors?
The plan would initially use Medicare fee schedules, paying most doctors and hospitals at Medicare rates, plus about 5 percent. After three years, the health secretary could negotiate with doctors and hospitals....The bill would limit what doctors could charge patients in the public insurance plan, just as Medicare limits what doctors can charge beneficiaries.
It will require everyone to have a qualifying insurance plan and violators have to pay penalties. [More...]
There's no cost estimate provided for the bill. But this doesn't sound good:
House Democrats pledged to offset the cost of their legislation by reducing the growth of Medicare and imposing new, unspecified taxes.
I'll bet they are planning more sin taxes on alcohol, cigarettes, and probably even junk food.
Given the many groups that will oppose the bill, and the Dems saying this bill is a "starting point" for discussion, it's obviously going to be watered down substantially. I wonder whether what we end up with will be an improvement over what we have now. I'm not optimistic.
One thought I have is that the new law, when passed, should apply to members of Congress. During the presidential campaign, I kept hearing the candidates say we are all entitled to the same benefits Congress gets. We should hold them to it... if Congress balks at having the new plan be mandatory for them, it's probably not a good deal for us either.
|< Financier Allen Stanford Held Without Bond Pending Detention Hearing | Washington Post Opines John Yoo Should Have Immunity >|