The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) multistate plan aspect of Obamacares will be an aspect included in all the exchanges.
In addition to regulated private insurer options through the states and other non-profit options being set up through Kathleen Sebelius (link below), there is a non-profit option being negotiated by the OPM in addition to the other insurance plans being negotiated by the OPM.
So in short, in the exchanges there will be tons of options to choose from.
Regulated private plans (not through OPM)
Non profit options (known as CO-OPs)
Regulated private plans ( negotiated by OPM)
Non profit option ( negotiated by OPM)
The non profit option being negotiated by OPM is a very special one.
It will be offered by the Government Employee Health Assosication (GEHA), the non-profit entity that provides excellent insurance plans to members of congress. The GEHA, part of OPM, gives excellent pre-existing coverage currently (Federal Employees Health Benefits Program). GEHA and OPM will allow uninsured people to choose that excellent option to have that same excellent insurance.
Mary Landrieu said that this non-profit plan will give people the same health plan that members of congress have.
You can read more about this here.
This option will therefore be just as good as the public option anyway and will compete with private insurers.
"The national plans will compete directly with other private insurers and may have some significant advantages, including a federal seal of approval. Premiums and benefits for the multistate insurance plans will be negotiated by the United States Office of Personnel Management, the agency that arranges health benefits for federal employees."
"The federal standards will pre-empt state rules in at least one respect: the national health plans will automatically be eligible to compete against other private insurers in the new exchanges, regardless of whether they have been certified as meeting the standards of those exchanges."
In summation, there is no pure public option. However, a non-profit option (that will be just as good as the public option) was snuck in and camouflauged. The non-profit option has the pure public option's spirits.
6:45 PM PT: Correction: GEHA is the non-profit organization that offers the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program. I accidentally mixed up my Fs and Gs. So where I said FEHA, I meant GEHA