August 18th, 2009
01:55 PM ET
5 years ago

Leading House Republican wary of health care co-op

Rep. Tom Price came out against a non-profit health care co-op on Tuesday.
Rep. Tom Price came out against a non-profit health care co-op on Tuesday.

(CNN) - Georgia Republican Tom Price, the chairman of the House Republican Study Committee and a medical doctor, came out against current proposals of a nonprofit health care cooperative to compete with private insurers, calling it "simply another name for a public option."

"The specifics of including a co-op are murky at best. Any Washington control over such a structure would raise immense concern," Price said in a statement. "Patients should be wary of a wolf in sheep's clothing."

The statement from Price, a leading critic of Democratic efforts to pass a health care reform bill, could indicate the inclusion of a health care co-op instead of a public option will likely do little to attract Republican support for the bill in the House.

"Health care reform should start and end with empowering patients," Price also said. "We welcome any discussion of new ideas that will bring patients closer to the care they need without government getting in the way.

The comments come the same day centrist Senate Democrat Kent Conrad promoted the notion of a co-op on CNN's American Morning Tuesday, saying similar business models have been "very successful" and "would certainly contribute to holding down" soaring costs.

Other Democrats, such as Rep. Anthony Weiner of New York - interviewed separately Tuesday on "American Morning" - say the public option is crucial for reform and the co-op idea is weak, lacking the track record or the immediate clout for generating reform.


Filed under: Health care • Tom Price
soundoff (126 Responses)
  1. John H

    Just another traitor republican politician on the take. Remember America – the longer these Republican traitors can make health care reform drag on, the more money they tuck away from the counter-Amercan lobbyists.

    August 18, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  2. joy

    this prove what the left are saying to the white house, no matter what the President does to pls the GNOP aka the Rupublicans, they will never surport any HCR. i pray to God for President Obama to pass HCR. may God bless President Obama and his family.

    August 18, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  3. clear as mud

    Now it's becoming altogether clear to all that the Repubs aren't interested in reforms of any kind. They raise objections to any new ideas without proposing anything of their own. My employer have already announced 9% increase on my health care premiums and no raise. I need options and competitions; it the capitalist way.

    August 18, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  4. Dave

    House Repubs are leary of anything that might actually work.

    The party of No is still looking to make the President fail. With this one objective the only plan is stall, deflect, delay, and eventually say no.

    August 18, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  5. Wayne

    Bottom line is the right (Republicans) is not going to back ANYTHING for the American people. They supported hundreds of billions of dollars for new roads, bridges, electrical grid, oil infrastructure, workout centers, swimming pools and even ca$h to the tribal leaders in Iraq but nothing in the way of support for those same things for our country. The US military even provides health care to Iraqis while many of our own people go without. I cannot understand how any Republican can wear a flag pin on their lapel. What they have done the last few months to stop progress in this country borders on unpatriotic.

    August 18, 2009 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  6. J TN

    I don't care for Co-ops in the place of a public option. But I do think this clearly illustrates the fact that Republicans have no interest in bipartisan work on this bill. They only plan to be obstructionists. It's clearly time for the Dems to do the work alone. In the long run the American People will thank them for it.

    August 18, 2009 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  7. Peter E

    It's not as if co-ops are any real competition to private health insurance companies. But the $3 trillion PER YEAR health care industry won't stop until all their competition is destroyed so that they can fatten their pockets while ruining small businesses and destroying families, as they have been doing for the past two decades. But who am I to argue. I don't have millions of dollars to bribe politicians and the media!

    August 18, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  8. John

    I agree this "Not for Profit" concept is not to be trusted. Sounds like a Fanny mae to me. Boy that works well.
    Government should be making rules not running businesses.

    Government should be seeking ways to fix the current high costs. Find a way to make health affordable, not free. Health care should be earned not a right of birth. The "greed" is a biproduct of over regulation. Fix Tort system. Freemarket competition across state and international boundaries for care, supplies, drugs, etc.
    It is ok to penalize someone's cost because of pre existing conditions such as smoker, drug addictions, obesity, etc.

    August 18, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  9. Donkey Party

    Enough with "bipartisanship". It is exceedingly obvious that the Neocons don't want health care reform, nor do they support any idea from President Obama. It's time to cut them loose and go this alone, just like they would undoubtedly do if they were in the majority. RepubliCONS are only interested in power, not in helping American people.

    August 18, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  10. Fair is Fair

    One thing is certain. It's GREAT that this disaster did not pass either chamber of congress before the August recess.

    August 18, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  11. Claudia in Houson

    Have you ever worked for an insurance company run by doctors, I have and it crashed into bankruptcy. Ultimately, business executives had to come in and restructure this company without doctors involvement. Just proof doctors or exactly what they are doctors. Doctors and paperwork just don't work well together.

    August 18, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  12. S M R

    Just another greed driven, selfish Republican that don't care about the average American.

    August 18, 2009 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  13. Alan

    Doesn't anyone else understand why the Insurance companies would be willing to lie, cheat and do whatever it takes to STOP health care reform?

    If reform fails, they stand to have the opportunity to line their pockets in multiples of TEN over the next ten years...they will be given the green light to do to us what the banking and investment "community" just did.

    Wow. Talk about motivtion to lie!

    I hear a lot of people here talking about politicians lying. Some do, absolutely. But do you HONESTLY think Insurance Co. CEOs are telling the truth?

    If you believe that one I have some video of the Phillip Morris CEOs "telling the truth" before congress you should see.

    August 18, 2009 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  14. Angus McDugan

    The great deception of all… Liberals have everyone thinking that they are so freedom loving, but when you look under the cover it is quite different. Remember that liberals / Democrats want to increase spending and create more laws which in turn creates more government to administrate and enforce. They survive by expanding government. That means intrusion into our freedoms. Every law, be it good or be it bad, forces restrictions of some sort. Therefore, liberals / Democrats are control freaks even though they have created an image that makes one believe they are all about freedoms.

    Think about it.

    August 18, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  15. exdemocrat

    Conservatives believes every word that the rich, elitist FAUX news d-bags say, but cant think for themselves? Sad sad day…for a moment I really wish there were death panels for these morons !

    All the GOP knows is fear-mongering and spreading racial tension. Pathetic party and pathetic, ignorant supporters !

    I cant believe how ignorant the GOP supporters are. How can they afford to oppose a reform that might benefit them monetarily. Don't tell me you are all about reducing gov. spending. Where was this ideology when an unnecessary war started? Its time for you guys to shut up and THINK(if you can).

    I wish all the republicans on private health care, good health – NOT !

    Obama is wasting his time with the whole bipartisanship. Though he is scoring on the front of exposing the selfish motives of blue dogs and rethugs, hes wasting precious time. Dear president, please please hurry up before its too late !

    God bless Obama and US

    August 18, 2009 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  16. Rob from Texas

    So many ignorant people are uneducated about this healthcare reform it's funny. Obama needs to take a strong stand and ram this down the Reps throats, maybe he's waiting until next election when the Dems pick up a few more seats then he push through whatever bill he wants. Everyone should have healthcare. What would Jesus do?...he wouldn't deny a person healthcare.

    August 18, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  17. JB

    It is just a disgrace that these "trusted" elected officials are mis-leading the American public about how awful it would be to have the government run a health care program. HELLOOOO – what about the VA and Medi-Care? Aren't those government run programs? They seem to be doing just fine.
    America ranks 37th (!) in health. It ranks way behind CUBA! My children's friends all work 2-3 jobs to make ends meet, but don't qualify for health insurance from their employers because they are technically part-time. They miss dental care, Pap smears, etc. and when something becomes really critical they show up in the ER and cost us all a fortune. It's ridiculous. We desperately need a public option for all the Americans who somehow fall through the cracks.

    August 18, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  18. Greg in Houston

    Why would Republicans want healthcare reform when it contradicts their platform of attrition "let em die in the streets".

    August 18, 2009 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  19. John

    Tell him If you have any better way than spitt it out or keep quite. You all GOPERS don't have any new thoughts or idia , only know how to keep seniors and un educated Americans in fearAmerican people should not support to thiese ( GOP ) war mongers

    August 18, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  20. schmedly

    Why does reform have to be one giant bill. If the public option is holding everything up why not just put it on a second bill or a third or a fourth. While our polititions argue about this option they pass a bill to negotiate the price of prescription medications, they can introduce more compition into the markets and open up the demographics so they are not so monopolized, they can due something about droping people because of prexisting conditions, due something about malpractice fraud. OOOOOHHHHH NO, lets put it all on one bill so every little problem will hold up the entire thing.

    August 18, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  21. Minnesotan

    Thank god! More of these loons need to come out and speak their peace also so the Dems realize bi-partisan does not work when your dealing with politicians who are bought and paid for by the health insurance industry. And I agree, the Co-op crap is code word for Public Option. Let's just call it the Public Option, pass it and watch all those high paid greedy CEO's shake in their Italian leather shoes.

    IT IS NOT ABOUT PROFIT. IT IS ABOUT THE HEALTH OF OUR NATIONS CITIZENS!! PERIOD.

    August 18, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  22. Chris from NY

    What the does he stand for? Do nothing?

    August 18, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  23. MomofFour

    There are many, many, MANY ideas out there for reforming the healthcare problems without having to take over the entire industry and socializing medicine. Americans will not agree to socialism. Period. You can call it a public option, co-op, health insurance reform, whatever you like...Americans are not going to agree to a takeover of the healthcare industry. This is about socialism...plain and simple. Thank God the GOP stopped this bill along with the conservative Democrats...

    August 18, 2009 03:09 pm at 3:09 pm |
  24. erika morgan

    Mr. Price must be very cozy in the pocket of some health care insurance company. See some glitzy TV adds for your next campaign from you vantage point there, Tom?

    Trouble is me, "Mr. Taxpaying Voter", wants to pay for and know what I am what I am buying. I want my health care premium to pay for health care and my campaign contribution to help elect the guy who will represent "Me" and "my political interests", I don't want you to make it possible to mix the two, till I can't understand just what transactions are made with my money. thanks.

    August 18, 2009 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  25. John

    Tell him If you have any better way than spitt it out or keep quite. You all GOPERS don't have any new thoughts or idia , only know how to keep seniors and un- educated Americans in fear .. American people should not support to these ( GOP ) war mongers

    August 18, 2009 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
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