I've frankly been shocked that no elected Democratic official has come out publicly and said that if Democrats pass a law that mandates captive new customers buy overpriced/expensive ONLY from the private insurers it will be political suicide.
Howard Dean called a direct government role "the entirety of health care reform. It isn't the entirety of insurance reform ... We shouldn't spend $60 billion a year subsidizing the insurance industry."
It's easy to separate insurance reform (which should only entail passing laws but no mandates and no money) from healthcare reform.
Remember how quickly Republicans started attacking the anemic worthless co-ops as soon as Gibbs and Sebelius floated them out there? Well, if Dems pass a mandate to buy crappy private insurance without a medicare-like government option watch how quickly Republicans paint themselves as the "populist" party defending Americans from the Democrats imposing insurance companies on them!
The Republicans actually have a game plan - they waited to attack co-ops. The mandates will be the next shoe to drop.
Finally, I see Jane Hamsher has got what really should be the line in the sand out there at least in one media source...
But aides involved in the negotiations say the controversies are taking a toll. Liberals are ratcheting up pressure on Democrats to demand a public option in any health-care overhaul. Liberal bloggers, in 72 hours, raised $309,393 from 5,155 donors for congressmen demanding a government insurance option. Jane Hamsher, one of the bloggers organizing the campaign, said Friday the left will never accept an individual mandate to purchase insurance if the insurance must come from private insurers.
I suspect at least one person in the whitehouse (or Congress) is at least as smart as myself or Jane Hamsher and has purposely avoided "mandates" because they know they will be unpopular. Can you imagine the sh*t storm if Dems are dumb enough to pass a mandate without a medicare like option?
No public option should = no mandate. People like Ezra Klein and others don't seem to realize publicly that once there is a mandate there is never again a reason for insurance or pharma to cooperate.
It's become very clear right now that one problem Obama has is that senior citizens are against health reform because they are worried it will eat into their own benefits.
Great communicators who can intelligently defend the public option ALWAYS compare it to medicare.
Make the Republicans attack medicare and social security and confuse the public by tying the "medicare option" (public option) to medicare...
Oh yes this would also allow Obama to remind the press (and people) that Democratic presidents have brought us both social security and medicare, which republicans have opposed with the same arguments they are opposing the medicare option today..
In reality it should be administered by Medicare and tied to medicare rates (as one bill has it)..
If not look what the republicans are going to do next..
Luntz's "gambit": Fearmongering that Obama is "declaring war on Medicare"
1 hour and 44 minutes ago -- 7 Comments
On Fox News' Hannity, GOP consultant Frank Luntz forwarded the false conservative talking point that President Obama plans to cut Medicare benefits, claiming that it "is almost like he's declaring war on Medicare because it's the only way for him to pay for health care," and that it is a "fact" that "[t]hey're talking about lowering the reimbursements for Medicare." In fact, as FactCheck.org noted: "The claim that Obama and Congress are cutting seniors' Medicare benefits to pay for the health care overhaul is outright false."
Could Hillary Clinton have been right about Barack Obama?
Could she have been right when she said that he was the candidate of lofty promises --"the skies will open, the light will come down, celestial choirs will be singing and everyone will know we should do the right thing and the world will be perfect" -- and not the candidate of real leadership?
In her former life as a presidential candidate, Clinton warned voters that Obama would let them down. She warned them that when the going got tough, he would fold up.
In general, the health care industry wants health care reform and for a very simple reason: It would mean 47 million new customers, many of them young and healthy.
But the industry does not want a public option as a part of that reform, because a public option would be large enough to negotiate with private insurers, pharmaceutical companies, hospitals and doctors for lower costs.
"A public option would cut deeply into their current profits," writes Robert Reich, former secretary of labor under Bill Clinton. "That's why they've been willing to spend a fortune on lobbyists, threaten and intimidate legislators and ordinary Americans, and even rattle Obama's cage to the point where the administration is about to give up on it."
I think it was a major mistake not to frame the public option as "medicare basic" or a "medicare option" etc...
Make the GOP attack medicare... Frame the public option as an enhancement to medicare... The over 50 crowd is the crowd that is opposing reform.
anyhow Representative Anthony Weiner is really on to something..
I'm through with this B.S..
Single payer advocates were completely left out of the senate hearings. Baucus refused to let them testify before the senate finance committee.
Even if single payer were not feasible, from a purely strategic negotiating standpoint it was a huge bungle not to start asking for the best so the compromise would be reasonable.
How in the world are dems going to look in the mirror much less hope to hold seats in 2010 if they mandate people buy a product from the very vultures who created this mess? What person who is healthy and between 20-64 years old is going to thank democrats for making them spend 3-4,000$ out of pocket on insurance in future elections?
Baucus and kent conrad are working their hardest to lower the subsidies both in amount and percent above poverty. Mark my words the cost of the final bill will be far greater than that which was scored by the CBO out of house committees.
So let me get this straight. Obama is going to mandate people (disproportionately young and healthy) buy private insurance from the very companies that have been raising premiums, copays and out of pocket expenses every year?
He has cut a deal with drug companies not to negotiate drug prices (see Medicare part D)...
Does he really think the GOPers are going to support him no matter what he does?
Stockholm syndrome is a psychological response sometimes seen in abducted hostages, in which the hostage shows signs of loyalty to the hostage-taker, regardless of the danger or risk in which they have been placed.
He will not get a single republican vote in the house and may get two votes from the Maine Senators in the senate...
No Democrat with a brain should support a final bill that mandates we fork over high priced premiums to the same folks that got us in this mess without a public option.
Obama campaigned for two years on a public option. That and NOT having mandates was the key difference in his health plan compared to Hillary. Not only will this piss off many many young people under 40 but there will be no drop in premiums. This is not only bad policy but a political loser as well. We all know that once the public option is dropped Freedom Works, the GOP and all the others will move on and jump on "mandating" healthy young people buy insurance as infringing on individual liberty to protect private health insurance companies..
I can't believe people like Bernie Sanders or Feingold will go for this steaming pile. Krugman has been right way too often...
The stimulus was watered down and included one-third tax cuts yet no GOP credit nor mainstream media attention was given to this.
Lets face it. Most of us realize mandating people buy insurance without government competition will do nothing to control costs and will create a private health insurance entitlement program by delivering 50 million new mostly healthy captive customers. Something I might of thought was a Bush-era plan like privatizing social security.
However most of us would swallow a mandate as long as there was a government run option: what has been called a "public option".
Most sheeple want to know what's in it for them. The word "public" for many people implies entitlement programs that they reflexively don't like - e.g. it makes them think they are paying for people who are lazy, or differently pigmented etc... Americans are selfish.
George Lakoff has a column about the bad phraseology of the health reform effort. Personally, I can't stand the irony of older white folks protesting against government run health care who are no doubt Medicare recipients!
Principle 8. The American Plan costs less and does more.
HMO's are big spenders, not on your health, but on administrative costs, commercials to tout their plans, and profits to investors. As much as 20 to 30% of what you pay does not go to your care. In The American Plan, 97% of what you pay goes for your care. It's a better deal for you and for our country.
Anyhow I think mistake number one was not essentially creating a medicare for all system. People love medicare and know about it. Even GOPers won't vote against it. Reframing public option into the "American Option" is the only way to reshape the discussion.
Linda Howe, executive director of the Lucas County Board of Elections, said a Samuel Joseph Worzelbacher, whose address and age match Joe the Plumber's, registered in Lucas County on Sept. 10, 1992. He voted in his first primary on March 4, 2008, registering as a Republican.
and just to make it even more fun, according to the GOP lawsuit if Joe was a new voter he'd be disqualified from voting due to a name misspelling in the registrar's database
I'm listening to Palin's newest rally teleprompter speech. The longest part BY FAR is abortion.
Since abortion hasn't come up yet nor has immigration I'm certain they will in the final debate.
I'm tired of hearing Democrats stumble on abortion.
the response should be simply - "the government should stay out of peoples' bedrooms and doctors offices as much as possible. Further, I trust women to have their own control over their own bodies. The best way to reduce abortion is by having a strong economy, with healthcare for all Women and children"
Tweety Matthews talked a bit about the underground Obama is a radical muslim terrorist fervor that Palin/McCain are expousing at their rallies. Matthews makes it clear though Scarborough and Mika have their sensibilities offended that McCain/Palin are pushing this Obama is not to be trusted memo. The Cindy McCain "in my shoes" non sense is a way of pushing "obama is not like us" theme..
I don't think we've seen this type of irrational hate since the 1920s. However, the press is not covering it.
"kill him",, "terrorist" and "off with his head" have all been shouted at Palin/McCain rallies.
Now we know why the media is not allowed to question Palin/McCain rally supporters.
remember in 2006 when the dems were elected to end the Iraq war and didn't - their approval dropped like a stone.
the dems in the senate refused to even try to get a timeline for withdrawal with funding passed.
Now the public is against the bailout bill that gives Paulson enormous powers and ignores his conflicts of interest e.g. he still owns goldman sachs shares.
Now rather than passing a bill with Democratic votes in the house - a bill that would be more progressive including actual measures through bankruptcy court to keep people in their homes or perhaps mandated transaction fees for wallstreet to pay for it they appear ready to cave to the GOP by adding tax breaks. Nothing for people to keep them in their homes or charge wall street for their crimes... Why not add provisions to attract Dems? Why try to get GOP votes? (I know they want to say "bipartisan" but if they don't get a majority of GOPers (which they won't) they will own it anyway.
Also linked to the legislation is a two-year extension of tax breaks that will save individuals and corporations about $149 billion over the next decade, another move popular among House Republicans. Two-thirds of House Republicans and 40 percent of Democrats defeated the bailout plan on a 228-205 vote. President George W. Bush and Senate leaders vowed to revive the legislation.
Obama doesn't seem to realize having an actual economic crisis is good for him.
Talking about real issues helps Obama - talking about lipstick and soldiers' bracelets and brittany spears does not. As soon as the crisis is "averted" the media will go back to talking about fluff.
I hope the new bill loses enough Dems in the house that it fails to pass again.
Obama made a huge mistake by embracing this thing tighter yesterday in Nevada. Josh Marshall at TPM noticed the risk. I somehow hope that Obama can vote against this though I fear he has McCained himself on it now.
Why do we elect dems to congress and the senate only to see them move to "sweeten" the bill for the GOP????
Should Obama lose (which I hope he doesn't) you will be able to trace it back to the day the senate passed this Turkey.....