October 23rd, 2009
01:45 PM ET
9 years ago

Pawlenty: Health care plan not a contrast with Obama

Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty rolled out a series of new health care proposals earlier this month.

Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty rolled out a series of new health care proposals earlier this month.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty said Thursday that his proposal to allow consumers to purchase health insurance across state lines is a "good idea" and is not intended to draw a contrast with President Obama's health care agenda in Washington.

Pawlenty, who is enhancing his national profile as he mulls a presidential run in 2012, argued that his plan would increase competition among insurance companies and drive down health care costs.

"It's not meant to contrast with anything other than to advance good ideas that will hopefully improve health care and the cost of health care and provide people more health care choices," he told reporters after a Washington fundraiser for his political action committee on Thursday evening.

The Minnesota governor sent a letter to the country's 49 other governors earlier this week urging them to band together to support his proposal.

"We are trying to promote good ideas, and I think those are good ideas," he said. "I don't think it's limited to being Republican or Democaat. We're hoping some Democratic governors will sign on to that as well."

Filed under: Minnesota • Tim Pawlenty
soundoff (71 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    He didn't think this through. Say for example the cheapest insurance coverage can be brught in Georgia. Don't you think everyone will eventually purchase that plan? That will make that insurance company a monopoly. a prime example is Wellpoint(BCBS). They have already cornered the market. The public option is the only real choice to drive down costs.

    October 23, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  2. GI Joe

    TPaw – we don't care what you say. We will NOT vote for you.

    Go back to Minnesota and wait for more bridges to fall so you can get the negative attention you "PUBS" deserve. Negative negative - oh, that would be O NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO

    October 23, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  3. mjm

    It' a better idea then the public option.

    Funny how Democrats didn't think of it. I mean, why wouldn't this be in the bill along with private co-ops for small businesses and TORT reform?

    I'll tell you why....The Democrats don't want reform, they want CONTOL and POWER...just like China, Russia, North Korea....Cuba....

    October 23, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  4. wait a minute

    The Public Option will allow Americans to buy coverage across state lines.
    What's so special about Gov. Pawlenty's original idea?

    October 23, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  5. JS007

    Yeah, because the GOP has no plan. This whole state line thing is just a red herring and does not solve the fundamental problem of private insurance being most costly than government run insurance (due to all the extra paperwork, advertising, and private profit that is added to the price).

    October 23, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  6. Lynda

    This is the same plan McCain had when he ran for President........not to many were in agreement with him then or he would have been elected .......OH I forgot Palin was on his ticket......maybe that's what made him LOSE.......still just another Republican going against this administration........stalling this Health Care Plan........making more people die because they don't have Health Care.........so if your family members die and you don't have Health Care.......BLAME the GOP

    October 23, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  7. Chris From TX

    good idea... You can drive to store across state lines and purchase items why not health care. That would drive down price because when supply goes up demand goes down and so does prices.

    October 23, 2009 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  8. Richp

    Tim, first it's a bad idea, the two main reasons are it makes sense and it requires legislation that would incur no new taxes or increases of existing taxes, thats not what this government is or has been about for the last 50 years. This government is about GROWTH and increasing revenue and control, it's a natural progression.

    October 23, 2009 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  9. Joe in DE

    Good idea, won't solve the problem of competition.

    October 23, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  10. Denis

    At this point any Republican politician is promoting only Private insurance Healthcare options which the vast majority of Americans do not support..

    They just cannot get it thru their thick skules that American in the vast majority want a PUBLIC HEALTHCARE SOLUTION that is a combination of public and private or ONLY a PUBLIC Healthcare system. GET IT IDIOT!!!

    October 23, 2009 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  11. RTB

    Think Think Think.
    What a dumb Idea.

    October 23, 2009 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  12. phoenix86

    Obama doesn't have a healthcare proposal. Obama's is a healthcare cost increase and rationing plan.

    October 23, 2009 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  13. Zago

    he couldnt fix bridges in Minnesota letting a major bridge in a highway collapse killing hundreds of innocents and now he wants to play with people's health. Go to sleep Gov Pawlenty

    October 23, 2009 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  14. gl, From Pittsburgh

    Shut up Tim Pawlenty. Sara Palin is more popular then you are. You are boring.

    October 23, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  15. Joe, Georgia

    Pawlenty knows nothing about how healthcare or health insurance really works. The idea of buying health insurance across state lines means nothing unless you break down all the provider networks and make every doctor, hospital and service provider accept every plan from every insurance company. Provider networks and insurance companies determine who can get care from whom and whether a plan can provide you with coverage, not state boundary lines. Insurance companies that want to operate in a specific state simply set up a plan and network if they choose to offer service in that area. Buying a policy in another state will be worthless unless doctors and hospitals accept the plan for payment.

    October 23, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  16. g

    the big guy,s will take over the little guy,s low rates for a while public- option is the only way lower cost.

    October 23, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  17. gl, From Pittsburgh

    Time Pawlenty is a big liar. He plan is go ask for charity help.

    October 23, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  18. David Doney

    I'm a devoted Democrat, and I like the idea a lot. We should throw every good idea at healthcare reform and see what works. The states are great places to try various pilot programs. Another good conservative idea that most Americans support is tort reform.

    The main problem with the current bills is they are about coverage, which by most estimates costs about $100 billion per year (4% of 2008 tax revenues; peanuts in the big picture). Since we don't have a fiscal reform commission (yet) we are forced into false choices of cutting Medicare costs or raising taxes, instead of just cutting $100 billion per year from our defense budget, which is about $750 billion.

    The REAL reform effort will be about cost. You'll know folks are serious about it when you see these strategies on the table: 1) Rationing of end-of-life care; 2) Requiring doctors to be paid on salary rather than "fee for service"; 3) Independent review panels that recommend the most cost-effective treatment path and require much larger individual contributions for variances to that path; 4) Efforts to bring in many more nurses and doctors, as we have serious shortages which drive up costs considerably.

    That is the REAL healthcare reform debate. $100 billion per year for universal coverage is peanuts and I'm amazed we're fighting over it.

    October 23, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  19. gl, From Pittsburgh

    Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty rolled out a series of new health care proposals earlier this month.

    Sorry to LATE!

    October 23, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  20. Health Ins Employee/MN resident

    I work for UHG. I make less than a teacher, my deductible is $3k. I can't afford to go to the Doctor and having MS, I NEED to go to the doctor! Every week, we employees are being bombarded with E-mails telling us to "take action, contact our local Congressional reps and Senators and speak out about healthcare reform". Now, my Governor, who is rarely at home these days, comes up with this idea as a solution. Tell me, Governor, state employee with great benefits,how many people you know that have individuals policies rather than group health insurance from their employers?

    Okay, I'm speaking out. For profit health insurance companies only care about the money. They do not care about keeping or getting people to a healthy state because that affects the stockholders profits.

    I'm sure my CEO, Steve Hemsley, has Gov. Pawlenty on speed dial.

    October 23, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  21. Mark

    Awaiting the Democrats to jump all over this and talk about the lack of plans by Republicans for Healthcare reform.
    How about the Parents Choice Act of 2009, the Health Care Freedom Plan and Empowering Patients First Act? Just because the biased media refuses to cover these bills does not mean they do not exist, well maybe they don't in Democrats' minds.

    October 23, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  22. Greg

    Yeah can't wait for all health insurers to be governed by the great laws of South Dakota, just like credit cards are now. Oh wait, I'm sorry, that doesn't work out so well.

    October 23, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  23. barbara

    I agree but because it makes sense, will save money and is a republican idea,...there is no way on earth that Obama, pelosi and reid will even listen. Shame, huge shame. Thats okay, November 2010 is just around the corner.

    October 23, 2009 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  24. diridi

    another biggest idiot in GOP..........

    October 23, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  25. Minnesotan

    Ah, our own little Timmy.... coming late to the table with a limp idea. Same old, same old..... There's a reason we Minnesotans view him as a joke: he hasn't done much for our state and is too busy playing his little partisan games flying around on OUR tax dollar. Typical GOP buffoon.

    October 23, 2009 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
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