The Stupak Problem Won't Go Away, But It Can Be Fixed

Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI) is not budging on his opposition to the Senate health bill's provisions partially funding, through subsidies, private insurance that offers abortion services coverage:

[T]the President's proposal encompasses the Senate language allowing public funding of abortion. The Senate language is a significant departure from current law and is unacceptable. While the President has laid out a health care proposal that brings us closer to resolving our differences, there is still work to be done before Congress can pass comprehensive health care reform.

If Stupak carries enough votes with him, he can block the passage of a Senate health bill, even with a reconciliation fix. I've discussed this before, but one clear way of addressing the Stupak problem is to replace the subsidies and the exchanges with a further expansion of Medicaid. Remember, the Stupak Amendment is all about preventing subsidy monies from being used to fund private health insurance policies that cover abortion services. Expand Medicaid further, eliminate the subsidies and exchanges, expand the exemption from the individual mandate and you can eliminate the Stupak problem while still meeting the objectives of the current Senate bill. And all of this is doable with a reconciliation fix.

Speaking for me only

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    For those who do not know what (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:36:03 PM EST
    the Hyde Amendment is, this is a nice description

    "The Hyde Amendment,[1] passed on September 30, 1976 by the U.S. House by a 207-167 vote, is a limitation amendment barring the use of federal funds to pay for abortions through funds allocated by the annual appropriations bill for Health and Human Services. It was so named because its chief sponsor was Republican Congressman Henry Hyde of Illinois. The measure was introduced in response to the U.S. Supreme Court's 1973 Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion, and represented the first major legislative success by abortion opponents in the United States.

    The cutoff of federal Medicaid funds prompted some states to provide public funding for abortion services from their own coffers. Over time the number of states doing so has gradually expanded, either through legislation or consequent to judicial rulings mandating equal access to health care for low-income women. As of 2007, 17 of the 50 states provide such funding, and 13 of these are required by court order to do so.

    The Hyde Amendment inspired the passage of other similar provisions extending the ban on funding of abortions to a number of other federal health care programs. Consequently, those federal government employees who wish to have abortions must pay for them "out-of-pocket". In addition, abortion services are not provided for U.S. military personnel and their families, Peace Corps volunteers, Indian Health Service clients, or federal prisoners."

    from (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by lilburro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:45:53 PM EST

    I understand why tempers run high on this issue, certainly, as pro-choice folks haven't had a lot of victories lately and the one that supposedly matters, a Democratically controlled Congress (+Presidency), are serving up some anti-choice sh*t right now in terms of Stupak and Nelson.

    But how are you going to win a fight about abortion access when you don't even understand Hyde?  How strong can pro-choice push back to Stupak be when you can't even say "Hyde is more than enough"?

    And yeah, what solution did Medicare for All proponents have for the abortion question?

    It seems to me abortion was never seriously in this debate.  Thus Stupak and anti-choicers can do whatever they like.


    I [plead guilty (none / 0) (#41)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:47:55 PM EST
    to inattention, but I did know about the Hyde Amendment.

    Well (none / 0) (#43)
    by lilburro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 01:21:14 PM EST
    I might be wrong, and choice advocates were all over this debate from the beginning, but I don't think I am.  It really seems like choice advocates should've been better prepared for this.

    *activists (none / 0) (#44)
    by lilburro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 01:21:55 PM EST
    rather, not advocates.

    Digby recognized and wrote (none / 0) (#51)
    by oculus on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 03:12:57 PM EST
    about the issue prior to that fateful day in the House of Representatives.

    Don't forget about all those Democrats (none / 0) (#1)
    by oculus on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:19:01 AM EST
    in the House who voted for HCR and Stupak/Pitts but who vowed never to vote for Stupak/Pitts in the future.

    They blinked first (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by andgarden on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:25:54 AM EST
    so their proclamations about the future on this issue are not credible, IMO.

    Sound good, but the new and expanded Medicaid (none / 0) (#3)
    by KeysDan on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:25:58 AM EST
    would be subject to the Hyde Amendment, right?   Also, the president's bullets seem to move from subsidies to tax credits.  Is this an attempt to go around Stupak?  

    And? (none / 0) (#7)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:43:25 AM EST
    So is the current Medicaid.

    So would be Single payer. so would Medicare Buy-In.

    The Stupak Amendment is worse than the Hyde Amendment, because it does not allow states to allow for offering Medicaid with abortion services coverage.

    The Hyde Amendment does.


    On "tax credits" (none / 0) (#8)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:44:34 AM EST
    it is like the EITC and not new.

    Stupak is objecting to that.


    You can't take away the (none / 0) (#4)
    by lilburro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:30:51 AM EST
    Exchange!  We need the power of the "market!"

    This whole thing is just one determinedly Village CW clusterf*ck, with the belief that a better market will change everything.  The Exchange is one thing I can see Obama fighting for.

    It doesn't fix the Stupak problem (none / 0) (#5)
    by Emma on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:36:43 AM EST
    It gives Stupak what he wants:  governmetnal restrictions on women's access to abortion, but through another means.  It matters not if access is restricted through Stupak OR Hyde.  

    The FIX is to get rid of Stupak AND keep government subsidies for private insurance that provides abortion coverage.  THAT'S the fix to the actual problem posed by Stupak:  expanded governmental restrictions on women's access to reproductive health services.

    Your "solution" only looks like a solution when you believe the only problem with Stupak is that it impedes passage of the bill.

    Incorrect (none / 0) (#6)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:41:48 AM EST
    The Hyde Amendment is clearly less restrictive than the Stupak Amendment.

    The Nelson Amendment is less restrictive than the Stupak Amendment (it is somewhat similar to the Hyde Amendment, but a bit more restrictive.)

    Your are simply incorrect.


    No (none / 0) (#9)
    by Emma on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:47:18 AM EST
    Expanding Medicaid = less access to reproductive health services for women even if it's less restrictive than Stupak.  Because Hyde/Medicaid is MORE restrictive than providing subsidies to women to purchase their own health insurance policies which, without Stupak, are perfectly free to offer abortion coverage.

    And weren't you arguing about a month ago that Stupak and Hyde were exactly the same?  Have you changed your position on that?  Because it sure seems like it to me.


    Well sure (none / 0) (#10)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:50:02 AM EST
    In your fantasy world where the HYDE AMENDMENT does not exist, then you would be correct.

    But the Hyde Amendment, which applies to ALL federal funding, not just Medicaid funding makes mincemeat of your fantasy.

    To be clear, let me tell you about the well regarded community health clinics that are trumpeted in this bill.

    The HYDE Amendment prohibits them from offering abortion services.

    You simply do not know what you are talking about.


    The fact is (none / 0) (#16)
    by Emma on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:05:54 PM EST
    I do know what I'm talking about.  And expanding Medicaid, which continues restrictions on women's reproductive health access, doesn't "fix" Stupak.  Like Stupak, it restricts women's access to abortions.

    But, since I haven't insulted you, I'm a bit tired of being insulted by you.  You continually avoid the point I'm actually making and insult me instead.


    I assume that you do not support (none / 0) (#20)
    by andgarden on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:09:37 PM EST
    Medicaid in its current form, and that you have never supported any version of the current healthcare proposal. Right?

    Elaborate on your assumption. (none / 0) (#24)
    by KeysDan on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:18:46 PM EST
    My read is that Emma is concerned with both Hyde and Stupak and their impact on women's health, not necessarily on Medicaid, per se, or the overall health insurance legislation.

    Your read is absurd (none / 0) (#32)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:27:48 PM EST
    Emma has no clue what she is talking about.

    she does not even know the differences between Hyde and Stupak.

    Emma was either ignorant or commenting in bad faith.

    She is not welcome back in my threads until she produces a picture of her sitting in in Stupak's offices and spitting on Hyde's grave.


    Oh BS (none / 0) (#57)
    by Emma on Wed Feb 24, 2010 at 05:27:56 PM EST
    KeysDan is right, you're wrong.

    The problem with Stupak FOR YOU is not that it restricts abortion access -- it's that it impedes passage of a health care reform bill.  (I happen to disgree -- I think House Dems WILL vote for a bill with Stupak in it, they've already proved it.)

    The problem with Stupak FOR ME is the SAME problem I have with Hyde -- it restricts access to abortion.

    The solution to MY problem, short of getting rid of Hyde which no Dem pol in the world seems to care about, is to get rid of Stupak, not push women into Medicaid, keep the subsidies, and allow private insurers the option that Stupak forecloses:  segregating Federal money in their bookkeeping and offering abortion access through their plans -- as States now do with Medicaid money.

    Pushing women into Medicaid, when States are cutting their Medicaid budgets, means even less abortion access.  As Anne points out -- where are States going to get the money to pay for abortions?


    I don't see what elaboration is needed (none / 0) (#35)
    by andgarden on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:41:05 PM EST
    If Hyde is unacceptable in the exchange, how could it be acceptable in Medicaid?

    No you do not know (none / 0) (#21)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:14:31 PM EST
    what you are talking about.

    First, I propose to fix the "Stupak problem," not the Stupak Amendment.

    Perhaps you do not understand what I mean by the "Stupak problem" though I am sure I explained it in the post.

    I'll try again. the health bills may not be able to pass in the House without Stupak's and his cohorts' support in the House.

    Stupak has repeated his position that he will not vote for the bills because the subsidies are not restricted to disallow the purchase of insurance policies that cover abortion services with federal subsidies, EVEN IF the individual pays for the abortion coverage out of their own pocket.

    That is the problem legislatively. My suggestion is intended to address the Stupak concern and ELIMINATE the need for a Stupak Amendment in order to get Stupak's vote on the bills.

    Of course, Medicaid is subject to the Hyde Amendment, AS IS ALL FEDERAL FUNDING.  ALL OF IT.

    Now I suppose you are opposed to Medicaid and want it abolished. and that you oppose Medicare for All because of the Hyde Amendment.

    You are free to do so. But stop with the nonsense.

    You can stop repeating what we all know - that Hyde restrict access to abortions. We know that.

    Stupak would impose even further restrictions.

    Either talk about what this post is about or stop commenting.

    I am no mood for this nonsense.


    LEt me add that (none / 0) (#12)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:50:52 AM EST
    Obviously NO, I have never argued that they are the same.

    Because they are obviously different.



    And let me explain to you what is different (none / 0) (#13)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:57:24 AM EST
    about them one more time.

    The Hyde Amendment does NOT prohibit states from using their own funds to provide Medicaid that covers abortion services.

    The Stupak Amendment prohibits individuals from purchasing insurance that covers abortion services EVEN IF they pay for the abortion coverage with their own money.

    Indeed, Stupak would prohibit the offering of insurance policies that cover abortion services from being offered on the exchanges.

    One fear that resulted from this is that insurance companies might drop policies that offer insurance coverage for abortion services entirely as a result of Stupak.

    This is all well covered material.


    So, where are the states going to (none / 0) (#26)
    by Anne on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:20:44 PM EST
    get the money to offer abortion services, when many of them are already cutting services right and left because revenue shortfalls are turning into gaping chasms?

    Is there a problem if the feds give the states money to expand Medicaid?  Seems like that could be tricky vis-a-vis abortion-funding restrictions, and I thought the plan was to give the states the money they needed for the first two years.

    Community health centers notwithstanding, why would we want to expand a program that has 50 state-level bureaucracies, each with its own income and asset limits that would have to be tweaked, limited providers, understaffed offices that are already having difficulty dealing with their caseload, whose subscribers' care is then then run through private Medical Care Organizations, and - in an overall sense - is a  program that generally carries the stigma of poor-and-on-welfare, when bureaucratically-efficient is Medicare sitting right there, subject only to age requirements?

    What would the difference or difficulty be in providing reproductive health services through expanded Medicare instead of Medicaid - do you know?  I don't, and would be interested in the answer if you, or anyone else, know.


    I wll answer your last question (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:25:55 PM EST
    "What would the difference or difficulty be in providing reproductive health services through expanded Medicare instead of Medicaid - do you know?  I don't, and would be interested in the answer if you, or anyone else, know."

    the answer is that Medicaid is CLEARLY better than Medicare for this  AS THE CURRENT LAW exists because, wait for it, Medicare is a completely federal program subject to the wait for it, HYDE AMENDMENT.

    Since Medicaid has a state revenue component, states are free to fund insurance that has abortion coverage.

    Medicare does not and would not have that freedom.  


    I am not sure there is the political will (none / 0) (#52)
    by debcoop on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 03:37:27 PM EST
    to expand the number of states that will fund abortions out of their own state funds.  I don't think it's an economic issue as much, as the amount of money is not that large.  But rather the ability to expand the number of states.

    As a long time pro choice activist I fear we would be fighting a state by state battle to maintain the number of states that do so now.  Only 4 do so legislatively, the other 13 do so through court order.  I don't foresee a political climate or an organizational structure in which there is an expansion of those 17.

    The states where there is no Medicaid funding of abortion are states which have next to no politcal infrastructure to support choice.  That frees the right up to go after the states where it exists now.

    As to your second point, the Hyde amendment was a prohibition of Medicaid funds.  It expanded one by one to the later programs like Veterans, military and then the Federal Health Benefits Plan in 2002 ( when the Republicans controlled everything) You may consider it a complete ban on all Federal funds but frankly I am not willing to give the right that rhetorical or actual point. It was not written that way and there is no inherent logic that it had to extend itself to all programs, but rather it was an example of politcal will on the right and political silence on the part of the choice moevement.

    It will still not be enough for them. I don't think Bart Stupak and the anti choice forces will think they have gotten what they wanted. They have tasted blood and they will go for more.  After all the tax benefits given to employer plans could be considered to be federal funds bu some argument. They have no shame and lots of chutzpah.  We should have as much.


    I don't know Anne (none / 0) (#28)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:23:27 PM EST
    Where are they going to get the money for freaking Medicaid period? Or schools? Or anything freaking thing?

    What the hell does your question have to do with my post?

    What do you want from me? a demand that Hyde be repealed.


    Does that make you feel better?

    Does it add anything to the basic fact that as bad a Hyde is, Stupak is worse?

    Can I even be allowed to discuss how not to make tings worse or is that treasonous too?


    Excuse me, but I thought I asked (none / 0) (#36)
    by Anne on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:41:15 PM EST
    a rational question, in a respectful manner: my name is not "Emma."

    I have not been ranting here about repealing Hyde - this is the first comment I have made on this thread.

    Doesn't the legislation call for the feds to give the states money for Medicaid expansion?  And if that is the case, does it get in the way of the states being able to use "their" money to fund abortion?  Is that not a legitimate question?  

    Holy cow, BTD, I don't think I deserved that response.


    My apologies (none / 0) (#39)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:44:52 PM EST
    You are right.

    's okay, BTD; (none / 0) (#49)
    by Anne on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 02:21:23 PM EST
    I think we're all a little testy these days.  

    I wish for better days ahead, but there's a little knot in my stomach that tells me maybe we haven't yet seen the worst, and the frustration that has built up in the last 18 months is getting to all of us.

    Keep the open threads coming - we need them to blow off steam and remember to laugh a little.


    Well (none / 0) (#29)
    by lilburro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:25:12 PM EST
    women would be worse off with Medicare, because it is entirely federally funded.  Therefore no abortions could be covered by it as per Hyde.

    Don;t let the facts get in the way (none / 0) (#31)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:26:17 PM EST
    of the rants.

    Well, she's not wrong about (none / 0) (#15)
    by oldpro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:01:41 PM EST
    getting rid of Stupak...and any other anti-choice Democrat who have helped make the Democratic Party what it has now become.

    The tent's too big, Tent...taken over by a few misogynist ideologues while the old-line Dems just stand around and watch.

    Why isn't there a sit-in in Stupak's office?  In Rockefeller's?  In Harry Reid's?

    And why aren't the New Deal Dems as mad as the tea partiers?


    Why? (1.00 / 1) (#19)
    by Emma on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:07:13 PM EST
    Why isn't there a sit-in in Stupak's office?  In Rockefeller's?  In Harry Reid's?

    Because of the "Insider Baseball" analysis so well-represented on this blog.  "Let's 'fix' Stupak by having restrictions on poor women's access to abortion through another means."


    You know what? (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:15:53 PM EST

    You are banned from my threads UNTIL you sent me a picture of you sitting in in Stupak;s office.

    do not come back until you have that picture.


    Explain (none / 0) (#58)
    by Emma on Wed Feb 24, 2010 at 05:31:07 PM EST
    to me what you mean, and I'll try to address your concern.

    If you can beat Stupak in a primary (none / 0) (#18)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:06:41 PM EST
    Go get 'em.

    I have no love for Stupak.

    I'm trying to explain in this post a way that the Stupak problem can be avoided, an approach BTW, that does no harm to the status quo on federal finding for abortion services.

    No help either but Stupak does harm.


    I understand...and agree with your (none / 0) (#23)
    by oldpro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:18:28 PM EST

    However, the fact that these battles arise at all when the Democrats hold the majority and the White House tells me all I need to know about the current crop of Dem electeds and their supporters at the federal level.  The party didn't just elect these anti-choice men...it recruited them and funded them.

    It's pathetic.


    That is a different issue (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:21:12 PM EST
    I am sick and tired of being attacked for discussing issues.

    I am sick and tired of being attacked on choice issue.

    You know, I am too prone to pointing to what I have written on the past, but I think it is really worth doing on THIS of all issues, where my record is pretty effing clear.


    Yes. It IS a different issue...but it's (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by oldpro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:38:26 PM EST
    the same subject.

    You think I'm attacking you?  Or your argument? Not so.  Simply expanding the discussion of the subject from my point of view...that of a 55-year activist Democratic Party member who finally gave up on a party who have forgotten their reason for being in existence...and speaking not only to you but to those reading this thoughtful blog, pointing out that there is a history, a path by which we arrived at this place.

    If I were 53 instead of 73 with a hip that still worked, I'd be leading the sit-ins at my two female senator's offices!  I still have the outrage but not the wherewithall to express it except through the written word.  My nieces...not a clue.  Daughters/granddaughters of my friends?  Shopping at the mall.

    It's hard to watch all that we fought for in the 60s, 70s, 80s come undone...and by people who call themselves Democrats who seek bipartisanship rather than progress.

    Oh well.  My generation did what we could.  It obviously wasn't enough.  We didn't edjamacate the young 'uns.


    My apologies (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:52:52 PM EST
    I let another commenter get under my skin.

    I've never been much of a protester.

    But I will cheer on all the protesters from my comfortable chair.


    Accepted, thanks. (none / 0) (#46)
    by oldpro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 01:31:55 PM EST
    Now this lifelong activist and protester (Vietnam set me off, ya know)is on the sidelines trying to disprove Capote's observation that 'typing isn't writing.'

    I've got an idea . . . (none / 0) (#11)
    by nycstray on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:50:08 AM EST
    if we're going to bargain with women's reproductive health, why don't we put men's on the table also? No subsidies/tax credits/whatever for private insure that covers ED?

    I'd go further (none / 0) (#14)
    by cawaltz on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 11:57:36 AM EST
    no vasectomies, prostate exams require additional coverage.

    I don't have a prostate why should I have to pay for men's exams?


    Sounds good but if your husband (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by oldpro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:06:29 PM EST
    had died of prostate cancer as mine did, you might want to rethink that one.  And if you have any sons, it will be an issue for them.

    On the other hand...as a bargaining tool, I take your point.


    There are women who die of cervical cancer and (none / 0) (#53)
    by cawaltz on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 03:51:56 PM EST
    uterine cancer.

    If the boys can argue that they shouldn't have to pay for maternity or any of the other womens care then I want to know why I should have to pay for mens prostates.

    As I pointed out I don't have a prostate.

    Oh and for the record I have a husband and 3 sons as well as a daughter.

    I'm not okay with my daughter or I being treated as second class citizens because of our plumbing.

    You, of course, are welcome to feel differently.


    See my last sentence...n/t (none / 0) (#54)
    by oldpro on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 04:51:56 PM EST
    :) oppps sorry (none / 0) (#55)
    by cawaltz on Wed Feb 24, 2010 at 12:32:27 AM EST
    I feel very passionately about this issue. I believe the quickest way for women to be setback is for reproductive rights to be set back. Between BCPs being labeled as abortifactents, low income women being told to whistle in the wind for low cost birth control, the Supreme Court insisting Birth Control should not be required to be carried on insurance formularies, women being told that once they hit six months of pregnancy that they no longer have access to a procedure even though doing so means putting their bodies at considerable risk(uterine preforation, hemmorhaging)I see setback on the horizon. There has to be a line in the sand and for me we've hit that line.

    I worry about my daughter's future. I don't mean to take that worry out on you though.


    We are in agreement, except that I hit (none / 0) (#56)
    by oldpro on Wed Feb 24, 2010 at 11:57:31 AM EST
    that line in the sand with the passage of the Hyde amendment...years and years ago.



    This (none / 0) (#25)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:20:29 PM EST
    is why I don't think this bill can be "fixed". It is so unwieldy and cumbersome that everyone can find a reason to vote against it. I'm sure that there will be a ton of reps against expanding Medicaid too, possibly even enough to kill the "fix". I think the process should be started over. There aren't enough reps or sens who have a vested interest in Obama putting a check mark in a column.

    And the mandates are not going to be changed. Through everything they have remained.

    And all of this nonsense (none / 0) (#45)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 01:23:56 PM EST
    all of it, all the complexities and the problems and the conflict and the Rube Goldberg legislative construction is in aid of what?

    Solely -- SOLELY -- to preserve a totally useless, non-contributing, money-sucking middleman industry that stands between people and health care.

    It's flat-out senseless.


    Governors aren't going to be singing the praises (none / 0) (#37)
    by me only on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:43:18 PM EST
    of increasing Medicaid coverage.  Several states are cutting money (coverage) because of the tough economic times.  

    90% federal coverage (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 12:44:06 PM EST
    makes it a good deal.

    For whom? (none / 0) (#47)
    by me only on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 01:51:37 PM EST
    The State Budgets, yes, but the tax payers, no.

    You have convinced me.  The President's Plan is even worse than nothing. Or as the WSJ said:

    "The President's Proposal," as the 11-page White House document is headlined, is in one sense a notable achievement: It manages to take the worst of both the House and Senate bills and combine them into something more destructive. It includes more taxes, more subsidies and even less cost control than the Senate bill. And it purports to fix the special-interest favors in the Senate bill not by eliminating them--but by expanding them to everyone.

    I thought your concern was for states (none / 0) (#48)
    by CST on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 02:07:02 PM EST
    And the ability for them to pay for medicaid.  But really it's that you don't want your taxes to pay for an expansion of medicaid or other healthcare for lower income individuals (via subsidies).

    Got it.  I doubt you will find a ton of support for that position around here.  Gee the WSJ doesn't like it.  Color me surprised.


    My concern was not for the States (none / 0) (#50)
    by me only on Tue Feb 23, 2010 at 02:32:16 PM EST
    my point was that support for the measure was likely to run into problems with governors because they have been grousing about "unfunded mandates" as part of the bill.

    You are correct; I don't want anything to do with this bill.  BTD's next post would be great if it came to pass.  Incidentally, we will hire 5 people if (when?) the measure dies.  The current uncertainty prevents us from taking such a risk.