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This disaster of a "reform" bill, that will saddle millions to private, mandated, junk insurance, is being lauded by the president and many Senators. Why? They got their pork, but aside from that, Obama never had much attachment to the public option, in my view, to begin with:

The president sought to downplay the lack of a public health insurance option in the Senate bill, saying: "There is so much good in this bill, and I'm now confident that it’s going to pass."

"I think people need to understand just how significant this is," Obama told Ryan.

The public option, he said, "is an area that has just become symbolic of a lot of ideological fights." But, Obama added: "As a practical matter, this is not the most important aspect of this bill — the House bill or the Senate bill."

This bill should be opposed for the giveaway that it is to the private insurance companies. It's simply another form of bailout for an industry that should be highly regulated, or done away with all together. If the rallying cry is not "health care for all", then what are you doing?

Originally posted to scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 06:54 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (7+ / 0-)

    www.deconstructingneworleans.com

    by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 06:54:11 AM PST

    •  You missed it. 45,000,000 get single payer. (0+ / 0-)

      Kennedy-Sanders-Cardin is already in both the Senate and House versions of the current much-maligned HCR Bill.

      Sanders-Cardin provisions expands the Kennedy CHC program -- making it the single best thing to happen for America's working poor since food stamps:

      -- 14,000 total Community Health Clinics nationwide

      -- Expanding capabilities

      -- 45,000,000 people served

      -- $$$$$ to attract 20,000 more primary care physicians

      -- Drugs at VHA prices

      -- Dental care

      -- Patient billing scaled to income

      -- 1/5th the per-procedure cost of Emergency Room treatment.

      The Public Option was a tactical distraction, never doable with respect to passing the Senate. Senate rules and Federal abortion law constrain what Harry Reid can move to the floor.

      Non-budgetary insurance sections for any P.O. do not qualify for reconciliation.

      Designed and constructed starting last april, scheduled to the very last moment inclusion with the Senate HCR, Harry Reid appended this fully developed Sanders-Cardin section.

      S1ngle-Pay3r medical care is enabled immediately and directly.

      America will become a rather larger Vermont. And yes, dental care.

      *******************************

      The amateurs and pundits are missing this development. They all missed it when it went into the House Bill, so missing it at the Senate Managers Amendment is no surprise.

      That's why they're amateurs and pundits.

      Angry White Males + Personality Disorder delusionals + sane Pro-Lifers

      =EQ=

      The GOPer Base

      by vets74 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 09:01:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Twisting his words in the subject line. (4+ / 0-)

    Whether you agree with him or not, think the bill should pass or not, you took the word "symbolic" out of context with his actual quote.

    This is not what I thought I'd be when I grew up.

    by itzik shpitzik on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 06:59:51 AM PST

    •  If you say so... (7+ / 0-)

      I don't think I did. However, it amazes me how many on this site have caved for this disaster of a bill. There is going to be much soul searching when, and if, it is implemented and the consequences are felt.

      www.deconstructingneworleans.com

      by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:06:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  You missed the context (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wmtriallawyer, Adept2u

        Either deliberately or via misunderstanding, you are off-base in your interpretation of Obama's statement.

        It just doesn't add anything to the discussion.  

        I've never viewed word-twisting as a valid debate strategy.  It's something I expect from the Rethugs, but not something I like to see on this site, and I object to it without regard to which side of the health care reform debate it may come from.

        •  Here is his exact quote: (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dems 2008, Areopagitica

          The public option, he said, "is an area that has just become symbolic of a lot of ideological fights." But, Obama added: "As a practical matter, this is not the most important aspect of this bill — the House bill or the Senate bill."

          Please point out to me how I am using it out of context. Obama believes the public option to be symbolic..."of a lot of ideological fights". But symbolic nonetheless. What you and I have is a disagreement over interpretation of his quote.  

          www.deconstructingneworleans.com

          by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:36:05 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  You honestly don't see this (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Adept2u

            as word twisting?

            "just become symbolic" vs. "just...symbolic"?

            I clicked on the diary thinking he said the PO was just some sort of symbolic gesture, vs. what he said...that is was symbolic of an ideological pie fight.

            When you get too big a majority, you're immediately in trouble. -- Sam Rayburn

            by wmtriallawyer on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:38:50 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I honestly fear he may not (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              wmtriallawyer

              Which underlines the real fear i've had regarding our President.  He made the bet that Americans were smart and he could talk to us like adults.  To those who have the ability to comprehend his english words well at least to me his administration has been like a breath of air, but this is the danger.  People like this diarist can so easily mistake what he is trying to say.

              Full time Obamabot, Kool Aid drinking Democratic hopemonger just full of change you can believe in.

              by Adept2u on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:17:50 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  If it is symbolic of other ideological battles... (0+ / 0-)

              this reduces its importance. That is my point. This is classic, Obama rationalization that will have long term consequences.

              www.deconstructingneworleans.com

              by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:21:16 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  Here is another response... (0+ / 0-)

              to your logic:

              He clearly meant it was unimportant (1+ / 0-)

              Recommended by:
                 scorpiorising

                 Only "a few million people" who buy into the insurance exchange set up in the bill would have benefited from the public option, he said.

              I don't know why people are giving you a hard time on this, did they not read the link? Right after he said it was symbolic, he said it was unimportant, and then he gave his reasoning for why it was unimportant.

              (-4.62, -3.28: Left/Libertarian)

              by acerimusdux on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:35:20 AM PST

              [ Parent | Reply to This | RecommendHide ]

              www.deconstructingneworleans.com

              by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 11:37:02 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Symbolic? Not that important? He needs (12+ / 0-)

    to go listen to what he said on the campaign trail.

    I wonder if he got whacked on the noggin and has amnesia. Because he seems to have forgotten a LOT of stuff.

    The public option wass the entire point of the bill.

  •  I have never seen (0+ / 0-)

    any documented evidence that insurers will gouge the public.  I just hear anecdotal stories.  If it's so good for insurers, why are they still spending millions to oppose it?

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White

    by zenbassoon on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:13:14 AM PST

  •  The PO was never a part of the HCR agenda. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    vc2

    Obama never campaigned on it-

    it was a recent development that some spoiled, disloyal liberals got became obsessed with and have become mentally unhinged about.

    What a revelation to learn we have progressives among us who are just as recalcitrant, ignorant, fanatical and stubborn as the worst of the teabaggers.

    I see we have our own versions of the Glenn Becks and Sarah Palins...

    •  He voiced support for it... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Caelian, JamesEB

      after his election. I think you are pojecting, about the Becks and the Palins. Shrill sounding as you are apparently on the need to cave for this bill, I will continue to oppose it on principle. Health care for all, no one is left out, and single payer is what will deliver that. Pretty simple and straightforward principle, wouldn't you say, compared to your name calling and insults to the American left.

      www.deconstructingneworleans.com

      by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:28:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  That was "projecting"... (0+ / 0-)

      btw, in case you don't get it.

      www.deconstructingneworleans.com

      by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:29:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Is this a lie or just wishful thinking.... (11+ / 0-)

      This is from Obama's campaign web site:

      The Obama plan both builds upon and improves our current insurance system, upon which most Americans continue to rely, and leaves Medicare intact for older and disabled Americans. The Obama plan also addresses the large gaps in coverage that leave 45 million Americans uninsured. Specifically, the Obama plan will: (1) establish a new public insurance program available to Americans who neither qualify for Medicaid or SCHIP nor have access to insurance through their employers, as well as to small businesses that want to offer insurance to their employees; (2) make available the National Health Insurance Exchange to help Americans and businesses that want to purchase private health insurance directly; (3) require all employers to contribute towards health coverage for their employees; (4) mandate all children have health care coverage; (5) expand Medicaid and SCHIP to cover more of the least well-off among us; and (6) allow state flexibility for state health reform plans.

      and this:

      "The Obama-Biden plan will create a National Health Insurance Exchange to help individuals purchase new affordable health care options if they are uninsured or want new health insurance. Through the Exchange, any American will have the opportunity to enroll in the new public plan or an approved private plan, and income-based sliding scale tax credits will be provided for people and families who need it. Insurers would have to issue every applicant a policy and charge fair and stable premiums that will not depend upon health status. The Exchange will require that all the plans offered are at least as generous as the new public plan and meet the same standards for quality and efficiency. Insurers would be required to justify an above-average premium increase to the Exchange. The Exchange would evaluate plans and make the differences among the plans, including cost of services, transparent."

      And in the end the love you take is equal to the love you make. Lennon/McCartney

      by landrew on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:29:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Amazing how we're being asked to forget Obama's (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Caelian, landrew, scorpiorising, Dems 2008

        own words.

        As recently as July 17th of this year, in his Presidential Address (still available on YouTube, go to the White House channel, couldn't find any embed link), Obama insisted that any bill he signed would have an exchange with a Public Option. Line in the sand.

        And now we're being told he NEVER campaigned on or promised it?

        Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

        by Robobagpiper on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:53:45 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Here is what Ezra Klein said.. (4+ / 0-)

          I thought he was on the good list?

          Joe Lieberman says Obama didn't support a public option during the campaign

          "If you look at the campaign last year, presidential, you can’t find a mention of public option," Joe Lieberman said. "It was added after the election as a part of what we normally consider health insurance reform." That's not true, of course. Much like Lieberman's belief that the public option will increase the deficit, which has been rejected by the CBO, and has never been explained by Lieberman (requests to his office for comment or clarification were not returned).

          But why go to all this trouble? Lieberman doesn't have to support the public option. He can oppose it on philosophical grounds, or on personal principles. Instead, he keeps raising verifiably untrue objections. It's baffling.

          and from the click thru...

          In fact, Obama proposed a public insurance option in May, 2007, on the day he first introduced his health care proposal during a speech in Iowa. From the New York Times account:

          Mr. Obama would create a new public plan open to individuals who cannot get group coverage through work or the existing government programs, like Medicaid or the State Childrens Health Insurance Program.

          Entitled to your opinion....but not your own facts...

          I am not against all health care reform, I am just against dumb health care reform!

          by justmy2 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:10:16 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  he did that in essence, the exchange will (0+ / 0-)

            "I know we will have differences. Put them aside. It is so easy to focus on where we don't agree and to lose the big picture. Fight until we win" -Kwickkick

            by vc2 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:35:29 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  In essence? Uh...ok (0+ / 0-)

              You know, privatize Social Security and let me know if the public considers that the "essence" of a safety net even though Obama didn't explicitly campaign on it.

              It is either public or it isn't.  There are reasons it isn't, but that doesn't mean he didn't campaign on a public plan

              I am not against all health care reform, I am just against dumb health care reform!

              by justmy2 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 10:05:50 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  below was meant for parent comment... (0+ / 0-)

          sorry...

          I am not against all health care reform, I am just against dumb health care reform!

          by justmy2 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:10:54 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Oh...and here is the July weekly address (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          acerimusdux, Robobagpiper

          "Any plan I sign must include an insurance exchange: a one-stop shopping marketplace where you can compare the benefits, cost and track records of a variety of plans - including a public option to increase competition and keep insurance companies honest - and choose what's best for your family."

          I am not against all health care reform, I am just against dumb health care reform!

          by justmy2 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:13:45 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Yeah, we're all just a bunch of spoiled (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dems 2008

      obsessed mentally unhinged teabaggers. Oh I forgot disloyal. On that one you're right, I am disloyal to the party when they try to feed me a shit sandwich and call it high cuisine.

      Repent. The end is extremely f*cking nigh.--28 days later

      by voroki on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:34:42 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hi Lieberman! (0+ / 0-)

      Health Care "Reform" means CEOs get another vacation villa in the Bahamas.

      by The Dead Man on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:36:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Wow, this is a "we've always been at war with (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      prfb, justmy2, fiddlingnero

      Eurasia" moment.

      Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit. -Declaration of Arbroath

      by Robobagpiper on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:51:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Entitled to your opinion (0+ / 0-)

      but not your own facts.

      Here is what Ezra Klein said...I thought he was on the good list?

         

      Joe Lieberman says Obama didn't support a public option during the campaign

         "If you look at the campaign last year, presidential, you can’t find a mention of public option," Joe Lieberman said. "It was added after the election as a part of what we normally consider health insurance reform." That's not true, of course. Much like Lieberman's belief that the public option will increase the deficit, which has been rejected by the CBO, and has never been explained by Lieberman (requests to his office for comment or clarification were not returned).

         But why go to all this trouble? Lieberman doesn't have to support the public option. He can oppose it on philosophical grounds, or on personal principles. Instead, he keeps raising verifiably untrue objections. It's baffling.

      and from the click thru...

       

      In fact, Obama proposed a public insurance option in May, 2007, on the day he first introduced his health care proposal during a speech in Iowa. From the New York Times account:

         Mr. Obama would create a new public plan open to individuals who cannot get group coverage through work or the existing government programs, like Medicaid or the State Childrens Health Insurance Program.

      Not that it will change your mind...but hopefully you just were not aware, and were not being disingenuous.

      I am not against all health care reform, I am just against dumb health care reform!

      by justmy2 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:12:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Whether he gets this bill or not (6+ / 0-)

    he better review politics 101.  When most of the public really liked the public option, it's kind of a bonehead move to tell them they really shouldn't.

  •  A Fox-worthy misrepresentation of his words. NT (0+ / 0-)

    "We will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist" --- President Barack Obama, 1-20-2009.

    by tier1express on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:34:59 AM PST

    •  Please elaborate... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dems 2008

      I just love these hit and run comments.

      www.deconstructingneworleans.com

      by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:37:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The FIGHT about the P.O. is "symbolic" (0+ / 0-)

        of the ideological battles. In other words, it mirrors the broader battles re the bill. I don't think he meant that the P.O. itself was symbolic or of no practical consequence. Your title makes it seem as if Obama was arguing that the public option itself was not really an effective way to address some of the problems in the healthcare system.

        "We will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist" --- President Barack Obama, 1-20-2009.

        by tier1express on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:54:59 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Those are your words...not mine. (0+ / 0-)

          Either way, "symbolic" lessens the importance of it.

          www.deconstructingneworleans.com

          by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:00:16 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  He clearly meant it was unimportant (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            scorpiorising

            Only "a few million people" who buy into the insurance exchange set up in the bill would have benefited from the public option, he said.

            I don't know why people are giving you a hard time on this, did they not read the link? Right after he said it was symbolic, he said it was unimportant, and then he gave his reasoning for why it was unimportant.

            •  Plus, it's circular logic. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              scorpiorising

              The last version of the public option only affected "a few million people" because it had been watered down so shamefully.  This is not entirely Obama's fault, of course -- Congress bears most of the blame.  But he didn't fight very hard for ANY version of a public option.  

              Based on his own words and actions, he never thought it was that important.  And he reiterates that, point blank, here.

              Fox "News" = Republican PRAVDA.

              by chumley on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 09:10:40 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  i guess the problem is (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    scorpiorising, Nailbanger

    as the HC debate started many people thought we end up with universal health care, like something that can be found in Canada or France or the UK...   but what we'll end up with is the same thing that we have now except you're forced to buy into it ... and the health insurance companies are even richer.

    I'm not even sure why people are calling this reform.. it's an abomination.

    "Brothers and sisters, the name of the game is power. If you ain't playing for power you're in the wrong place."

    by soros on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:45:44 AM PST

  •  NOT A BAIL-OUT (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Caelian, prfb, fiddlingnero, Nailbanger

    People keep referring to the fact that insurance will be mandated without an option more competitive than private insurance as a bail-out of the health insurance industry.  It is not a bail-out - the private health insurers are doing fine.  It is a GIFT or a GIVE-AWAY.

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:52:25 AM PST

    •  It is a kind of bailout... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      soros, chumley, fiddlingnero, Dems 2008

      corporate welfare, however you call it. It is a give-away to the health insurance industry, at a time when we should seriously be reigning them in, or doing away with their role altogether.

      If this bill really were for the benefit of the people...it wouldn't be this bill. Open your eyes.

      www.deconstructingneworleans.com

      by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 07:58:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  My eyes are open. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        fiddlingnero, Nailbanger

        I think it's a gift or give-away, if that's ok with you.  All I'm saying is the insurers don't need a bail-out because they are doing fine as is - they aren't going out of business nor are they headed in that direction.  If you're making a million bucks a year and I give you another million, I'm hardly bailing you out.

        The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

        by accumbens on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:04:16 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The health insurance industry... (0+ / 0-)

          has been struggling with costs. IT is not as rosy as you picture it. But google it, if you don't blieve me. This bill will mean millions more for an industry we were supposed to be reforming. But go read what Conyers has to say on the front page, if you don't believe me.

          www.deconstructingneworleans.com

          by scorpiorising on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:13:43 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  We have no argument (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            fiddlingnero

            If there was no legislation, the industry would not need a bail-out.  They've been having some problems with return from their investment portfolios because of lower interest rates and other problems with medicare reimbursement, but otherwise they are doing fine.  With the legislation, they are simply getting a gift of millions of new customers that have to buy what they're selling.

            If you're saying they are getting bailed out compared to what would happen IF there was a public option, then ok.  But that was a possible outcome, not the reality.  In reality, it's a gift.  They've done even better than the status quo.

            The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

            by accumbens on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:26:41 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Struggling with costs (0+ / 0-)

            Yeah the cost of spa junkets for executives is skyrocketing!  Poor dears.  

  •  This is news? He called it a sliver months ago (0+ / 0-)

    Apparently, he didn't really believe all of that stuff he was saying about the Public Option being required to hold insurers accountable.

    "Any plan I sign must include an insurance exchange: a one-stop shopping marketplace where you can compare the benefits, cost and track records of a variety of plans - including a public option to increase competition and keep insurance companies honest - and choose what's best for your family."

    or this...

    But an additional step we can take to keep insurance companies honest is by making a not-for-profit public option available in the insurance exchange.

    ...

      (Applause.)
      For example -- for example, some have suggested that the public option go into effect only in those markets where insurance companies are not providing affordable policies.  Others have proposed a co-op or another non-profit entity to administer the plan.  These are all constructive ideas worth exploring. But I will not back down on the basic principle that if Americans can't find affordable coverage, we will provide you with a choice.  (Applause.)  And I will make sure that no government bureaucrat or insurance company bureaucrat gets between you and the care that you need.  (Applause.)

    Accountability...meh?  What's for lunch?

    Btw-The legislation builds in an insurance bureaucrate getting between you and your claims.  It is in the bill.

    I am not against all health care reform, I am just against dumb health care reform!

    by justmy2 on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:06:53 AM PST

  •  Flip it: If it's "symbolic" then it's no big... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Caelian

    ... deal to legislate it for us, is it?

    Thought so.

    Next.

    Thank you for playing, Mr. President!

    IF THEY ARE GOING TO SCREW THE PEOPLE, MAKE THEM OWN IT.

    by potatohead on Tue Dec 22, 2009 at 08:08:46 AM PST

  •  Unless the PO was (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The YENTA Of The Opera

    open to more than 1% of americans,like it is in the House bill...it is just symbolic.
    It would not have put pressure on the private insurers like some of the regulatory features of this bill like loss ratio.

    He liked the concept of a PO, but clearly saw that the reality of it was almost insignificant in the overall bill and overall picture.

    If he had a solid 60 in the Senate, he would have gotten it in,but in the summer of 2008,he had no crystal ball.

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