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Another day, another reform compromise

By Ben Pershing
The year -- and this session of Congress -- may be nearly over, but it's never too late for yet another sweeping revision of the health-care reform proposals that have been under consideration for months.

Major changes are afoot in the Senate: "A potential deal took shape Monday that could eliminate the public option from the Senate health reform bill, as Democrats weighed big expansions of both Medicare and Medicaid in a bid to break an impasse over the government insurance plan," Politico writes. As part of the compromise, the New York Times reports, "the federal Office of Personnel Management would negotiate with insurance companies to offer national health plans to individuals, families and small businesses." In return for that concession, liberals would get their wish of having the age for Medicare eligibility reduced to 55, with the newly eligible allowed to buy in to the government health program. This twist includes a cameo by none other than Howard Dean, who "injected the buy-in concept back into the negotiations two weeks ago," Politico notes.

Does the White House -- which is said to prefer the "trigger" compromise -- have an opinion on this development? Reaction to the plan off the Hill was mixed, the Wall Street Journal reports: "The scaled-back government plan got a warm reception from some in the insurance industry, which has opposed the version of the public option in the Senate bill. But some health-policy specialists were skeptical the plan would do much to lower insurance prices or generate competition, noting the exchange would already include nonprofit plans operated by private entities." Abortion also continues to be a sticking point, as the Senate will vote as early as Tuesday on Ben Nelson's amendment placing restrictions on federal funding for abortions. If, as expected, the amendment fails, it will be that much harder to get Nelson's vote in the future.

Continue reading at Political Browser »

By Ben Pershing  |  December 8, 2009; 8:31 AM ET
Categories:  The Rundown  
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"Medicare will run out of money by 2017"

more fakery and fear from the right

Posted by: tru-indy | December 8, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

"Medicare will run out of money by 2017 "

LMAO.. it does? how it that possible.. it continues bringing in huge amounts of money.
It doesn't run out of money, it simply stops running at a profit

Posted by: tru-indy | December 8, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Single Payer.

cheaper, faster, less rigamaroll.

this thing?

a camel or elephant.

Posted by: tru-indy | December 8, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

This latest proposal, which includes lowering the age to be eligible for Medicare, frightens me.

Medicare will run out of money by 2017 and no one has made an attempt to address the problem.

It appears this latest proposal will add to the deficit and will lead to much-higher taxation soon.

It is time for the politicians in Washington to consider what they are doing to our children and grandchildren!

Posted by: mwhoke | December 8, 2009 8:43 AM | Report abuse

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