Deal boosts prognosis for reform
By Ben Pershing
The health-care reform roller-coaster has been through more ups and downs in the last six months than are possible to count. With a Senate deal on the public option in the offing, Wednesday is clearly an "up" day.
The Associated Press ledes: "After agreeing tentatively to jettison a key liberal priority -- a full-blown government-run insurance option -- Democrats say they are getting close to pushing President Barack Obama's health care bill through the Senate." Negotiators were "hoping to remove a last major roadblock preventing the bill from moving to a final vote in the chamber," the Washington Post writes, and the deal reached Tuesday appears to have pleased most (but not all) moderates and liberals in the chamber. The New York Times explains: "Under the agreement, people ages 55 to 64 could "buy in" to Medicare. And a federal agency, the Office of Personnel Management, would negotiate with insurance companies to offer national health benefit plans, similar to those offered to federal employees, including members of Congress."
TalkingPointsMemo has a detailed run-down of the tentative plan, plus the suggestion that the White House likes it. Ezra Klein is waiting for more specifics: "What are the conditions for the non-profit plans? How many plans do there need to be? What does the regulation look like? When does the Medicare buy-in start? But assuming those pieces don't come in much worse than expected, the combination of national non-profits and a Medicare buy-in seems like a pretty good deal. Better by far than what Democrats looked likely to get a week ago. And more likely, by far, to seed health-care reform with scalable experiments."
December 9, 2009; 8:27 AM ET
Categories: The Rundown
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