June 21st, 2009
11:15 AM ET
13 years ago

Leading Democrat concedes sticker shock of health care costs

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The cost of health care reform has caused "sticker shock," a leading Democratic senator conceded Sunday.

Appearing on ABC's "This Week" program, Sen. Christopher Dodd of Connecticut said a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) analysis of health care bills proposed so far showed they were more expensive than originally believed.

Asked about sticker shock from the $1.6 trillion price tag, Dodd said "we all" have it.

"We've got to obviously have better numbers than the ones we've seen," Dodd said.

Dodd is acting chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee that is considering one Democratic proposal, while the Senate Finance Committee is working on its own measure.

Democrats want a government-funded public insurance option to ensure health coverage is available to the nation's 46 million uninsured Americans. Congressional Republicans reject a government-funded plan as the first step toward a government takeover of health care.

"The CBO estimates were a death blow to a government-run health care plan," Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, said on the same program, adding: "We do need to deal with inflation in health care, private and public inflation, but we're not going to go down … the government owning health care road in America."

Filed under: Chris Dodd • Health care • Lindsey Graham
soundoff (40 Responses)
  1. David in West Virginia

    Universal health care wouldn't be so expensive if the medical community, pharmacheuticals, hospitals and health care professionals weren't on the take. They should be paid a salary for their services and nothing more. Every hosptial doesn't need all the expensive equipment that they rarely use that runs up health care cost. Finally, if Congress and Senate can have free health care, why can't the rest of us! They remind me of the Khomenis of the world who think they are privileged and that we are dirt beneath their feet! Take away their health care and see how they like it!!!!!!

    June 21, 2009 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
  2. skyhawkdriver

    Dodd is as two faced as they come..it is a well known fact that his wife sits on the board of four of the largest insurance and health care providers in the country..and the price tag of 1.6 trillion??..if the government has it's way you can triple it..how many government jobs will socialized medicine create??..and when will dodd bring his buddy barney frank on-board to assist him??..I don't have the answers,but as someone who currently is paying almost $1600 a month for cobra I would hope there is an answer somehow..perhaps the first step is to end free healthcare for illegals..second would be tort reform..stop the frivelous lawsuits so doctors don't have such high liability insurance..this isn't about democrats and republicans..it's about or health and our relationships with our doctors..I really don't want the ederal government controlling my health..do you??..

    June 21, 2009 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  3. renea

    First of all who do we think pays when someone goes to the ER and they dont have Health Insurance? We do, so stop saying we cant afford it when we are already paying for it. For the ones that say they done want to pay someone else welfare guess what! you already are paying for it . Me for 1 donot mind my tax dollars going towards reforming healthcare because its so desperately needed, congress already have it and who do you think pays for theirs? WE DO!

    June 21, 2009 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  4. Willy Brown

    Dodd's a doofus loved by the media.

    June 21, 2009 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  5. D. Tree

    At least Dems are giving us the real numbers, instead of cooking the books like the Republicans did for the Iraq War!

    June 21, 2009 03:21 pm at 3:21 pm |
  6. ib

    Reinstate Darwinism: you wrote the truth and it is nice to see someone hit this headone. For another thing all you libs that want Bush in jail; Dodd should be the one in jail along with Frank. They had as much if not more to do with this mess that we are in than Bush did but the far left libs would never admit it since they would have to hold King Obama responsible for the stupid things he is doing.

    June 21, 2009 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  7. nan

    you don't have to have sticker shock if you the plan was all encompassing: limit on lawsuits, expand medicare, negotiate with drug companies, limit insurance companies authority. As Hillary proposed in the 90's – an healthcare card (similar to ATM) that can be used ANYWHERE for ALL U.S. citizens.

    June 21, 2009 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  8. renea

    To Reinstate Daw. WHOEVER: Maybe you are that fortunate now but not everyone are that fortunate, Maybe you should try and help someone thats on welfare then thats 1 the government wont have to worry about. you say get a job put up a web-site so they can look it up,and try to find a job instead of complaining about someone else well-being go and help someone you know that cant help their self. Yes i have a job healthcare now and I Thank GOD I do but i think about the ones that dont. Because there maybe a time i will need help again.

    June 21, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  9. Henry Miller

    What did the Dems think? That giving "free" health care to millions of people was going to cost $1.98?

    The trouble with do-gooder Dems is that they don't think! They're out there trying to Do Good and think either that it's somehow immoral to consider the costs of their do-gooding or that they can bury the costs by punishing those nasty rich people some more.

    June 21, 2009 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  10. didi

    dems., just pass the bill, orelse, you will never be elected next time...ok...people are watching....we need health care., and next immigration, put strict positions on immigration.....we cover unwanted...why not citizens???? idiots....

    June 21, 2009 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  11. Henry Miller

    @Kelly, who's willing to pay a "fair share" of the costs of universal health care.

    Good for you!

    But your willingness isn't mine. I don't think that anyone should get for "free" what other people have to work for. Such practices demean the recipient and abuse those compelled to support them.

    Not to mention, if you define "fair share." as a percentage of income, and my income is greater than yours, then I pay more for exactly the same services. That sure isn't "fair." When you buy a loaf of bread at a grocery store, everyone pays the exact same price, that's "fair."

    June 21, 2009 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  12. Susan

    I cannot understand how a "conservative" view is deny health care to people who have lost their jobs or who are mentally ill and can't work. What are they to do? Head for the ER which costs ALL of us much more than if they had regular care to begin with? How in the world do wealthy Republicans sleep at night after saying their prayers? They pretend to be so religious and so caring about America, but they insist on cutting taxes, which in turn leaves less money for education, roads, police...you name it, we need it. Taxes are not inherently bad; they are necessary in a civilized society. Government CAN do some things better than an individual can. Am I going to plow my street after a snowstorm? Take everyone's trash to the dump? Police the neighborhood with a gun? Come on, it is time for Republicans to stop being the problem, and help with the solution. Please!

    June 21, 2009 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  13. moses

    We are retired, not yet eligible for Medicare and pay $12,500 this year for health insurance which does not include vision or dental coverage. Under this new plan will we still continue to pay for our own AND have more of our tax money pay for those who don't have it? I'm starting to think we did things wrong by becoming educated and working hard so we could enjoy our lives. It seems the distribution of our wealth is all the dems want to talk about. Maybe it's time for some of the losers and illegals to foot the bill for themselves.

    June 21, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  14. Patriot

    Medicine WAS NEVER EVER invented as a profiteering enterprise!
    No upstanding society will seek to profit from the misery/illness of its citizens! Shame shame on the unpatriotic wealth addicts of the so-called insurance industry. They are driving EVERY sector of the nation's economic into ruin. They MUST be stopped with a public health care plan!

    Similar argument for education, it is virtueless and morally repugnant to profit off the ignorance of fellow citizens.

    It business people want profiteering, then they should be in enterprise other than health care, education, etc!

    The health care profiteers are doing the same damage to the US economy as the financial profiteers have been doing in driving the nation into depression.

    June 21, 2009 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  15. Hopeful Optimist

    @ Reinstate Darwinism:

    Your grammer, spelling and sentence structure are a dead giveaway as to your educational and critical thinking deficiencies. Bet you think you're pretty smart and cool with your simpleton ideas you spout. If one were to profile you based on your written language usage, the tone of your message and the obvious chip on your shoulder, they'd probably conclude that you are (1) white, (2) not too well read, and (3) VERY insecure about your status in the overall socioeconomic strata.

    By the way, to 'reinstate Darwinism' implies that it went away. What a village idiot you are. A true laughingstock.

    June 21, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
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