Day by Day

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Health Care Reform, if you can call it that.

O.K. We did a Minneapolis run yesterday and so we got to listen to talk radio. Gotta love Rush...

He was plugging away at the Heritage Foundation, where I founds some absolute beauties. I would suggest checking out this site.

Here is the Conclusion of "A Federal Health Insurance Exchange Combined with a Public Plan: The House and Senate Bills"

President Obama and the congressional leadership are intent on creating a national health insurance exchange. In its various legislative forms, their version of the health insurance exchange is a powerful regulatory agency; it is not merely an administrative agency to facilitate enrollment and to promote choice and anything remotely approaching free-market competition.

In many respects, the national health insurance exchange resembles a solution in search of a problem. If the President or Congress wanted to create a national health insurance market, they would not need to create a national health insurance exchange--they would merely have to repeal existing federal barriers to insurers competing across state lines. If the President and Congress wanted to fix the inequities of the federal tax law, a key rationale for creating a health insurance exchange at the state level, all they would have to do is to reform the federal tax laws governing health insurance and end the practice of discriminating against those who cannot or do not get health insurance through their place of work.

If the objective of the President and Congress is to expand the role of the federal government in providing health insurance and determining the kind of health insurance that Americans will get, the national health insurance exchange is a convenient tool for that federal expansion and control. It would be tantamount to a national arena for the public plan to undercut private health plans and erode existing private health coverage.

There is little doubt that a national health insurance exchange, combined with a public plan, can achieve that policy objective. But there is also little doubt that such an objective is not what most Americans had in mind when they embraced the cause of comprehensive health reform.

Robert E. Moffit, Ph.D., is Director of the Center for Health Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation.

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