December 23rd, 2009
12:15 PM ET
11 months ago

A Democrat's view from the House: Senate bill isn't health reform

Washington (CNN) – The Senate health care bill is not worthy of the historic vote that the House took a month ago.

Even though the House version is far from perfect, it at least represents a step toward our goal of giving 36 million Americans decent health coverage.

But under the Senate plan, millions of Americans will be forced into private insurance company plans, which will be subsidized by taxpayers. That alternative will do almost nothing to reform health care but will be a windfall for insurance companies. Is it any surprise that stock prices for some of those insurers are up recently?

I do not want to subsidize the private insurance market; the whole point of creating a government option is to bring prices down. Insisting on a government mandate to have insurance without a better alternative to the status quo is not true reform.

By eliminating the public option, the government program that could spark competition within the health insurance industry, the Senate has ended up with a bill that isn't worthy of its support.

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Filed under: Health care
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. katiec

    Am hoping once this gets passed in the Senate, they will all be able to get together and come up with an acceptable plan.
    We need to open the door to Health CAre Reform. It can be
    perfected over time, which can never happen if it does not pass.

    December 23, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  2. gt

    the senate has no back bone ,,, there gutless croocks,,, americans want a public option,,,

    December 23, 2009 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  3. johnrj08

    I agree with Rep. Slaughter, although I do think that, once signed into law, this reform can and will be enhanced and it will be much easier to add more cost-saving and price-control elements to it. The point is, you have to start somewhere, and the notion that the very first health care reform in nearly a century would have everything in it is preposterous.

    December 23, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  4. jane

    I agaree with Rep. Slaughter, but as puny as this bill is, at least it's something. I am disappointed in the Democratic Congress and angry at those who are responsible for the lack of a public option and medicare buy-in for younger seniors. I hope the next election will see them "made famous."

    December 23, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  5. Matt

    I agree with the completely with the Congresswoman.
    The Obama administration is so desperate for any kind of victory, even if it is just symbolic and nothing with real teeth, they would resort to bribing member of their own caucus.
    I think that's pathetic,
    And I am an unapologetic liberal.

    December 23, 2009 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  6. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert but...

    Amen, sister. This bill is a bad joke. It contains no real reform. Our congress critters delivered exactly what the lobbyists for their corporate masters told them to. Sorry, fellow Obamabots, I am rooting for it to crash and burn. If it fails, the whole healthcare system will eventually implode and we'll finally get a single-payer system like the rest of the world. Americans will never, ever take rational action for the future based on available facts. Our short attention spans and memories, overdeveloped sense of entitlement, our corporate-ocratic form of government and ideological arrogance will thwart progress every time. We always maintain the status quo until some major crisis has already occurred. Have a nice day!

    December 23, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  7. j

    I agree. The Senate bill falls far too short of the mark and is a win for the insurance companies. Either provide a public option or include the antitrust laws for the insurance companies and get rid of the mandate, which forces people to buy insurance. Get rid of the tax penalties for companies providing workers better than average health care options. Get rid of any anti-abortion riders to the bill.

    I'm not in favor of the Senate version of the bill as it now stands.

    December 23, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  8. J. Rochester, NY

    And they are right.

    December 23, 2009 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  9. Ken from missouri

    I think these progresives are a bunch of spoiled children they have to realize that this country is ful of alot of different people and they all have different ways they think our gov should act also the public option would have covered only about 5 million people and finally they have to realize our system is based on capitalism,the free market ,competition we don't need the gov to provide things for us
    our private sector will be fine our system is great if you are willing to work for it it's all in your hands not the government.

    December 23, 2009 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  10. RichP the Pocono's

    Am very glad I did not dump that wellpoint stock we inherited. Go health care, double it again.

    December 23, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  11. Reformed Republican

    NO PUBLIC OPTIONS = NO MANDATES.

    What's so hard for you guys in the WH and on capital hill to understand? Did we elect village idiots or lawmakers?

    December 23, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  12. Dennis in AZ

    I warms my heart to know that it's not just the Independents feel hoodwinked by both the House and the Senate. The perspective from out here in the country is fairly simple: The government is taking our money and spending it on themselves. The Special Interests are now officially running the country and creating a world where only politicians are wealthy. I've seen this act before somewhere–Rome. It really worked out well for the Roman Empire–I'm sure their ghosts are gazing down upon the US right now...and laughing their butts off.

    December 23, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  13. Four and The Door

    By eliminating the public option, the government program that could spark competition within the health insurance industry, the Senate has ended up with a bill that isn't worthy of its support.
    ______________________________________________________
    Oh, really? So you are convinced that the insurance companies are the primary reason for high health care costs?

    When was the last time you looked at a hospital bill?

    Blaming high costs on insurance companies is like blaming car dealers for the high cost of automobiles or real estate agents for the high cost of housing. No difference. These Democratic health reform bills are about as genuine as housing reform would be the federal government opening up real estate offices. Not very effective, is it?

    December 23, 2009 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |