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Howard Dean BLASTS Baucus's Crappy Health Bill!!

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Joanne98 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 10:39 AM
Original message
Howard Dean BLASTS Baucus's Crappy Health Bill!!

Thu Sep 17, 2009 at 08:17:24 AM PDT

One of our health care heroes, Dr. Howard Dean, just blasted Senator Baucus's health industry bill, and called it for it was---a boondoggle for private insurers. Here's Dr. Dean below:

Howard Dean, former Democratic National Committee chairman, minced no words about Sen. Max Baucus's healthcare proposal, unveiled to the public this morning. "The Baucus bill is the worst piece of healthcare legislation I've seen in 30 years," Dean said last night at a healthcare town hall and book signing in Washington. "In fact, it's a $60 billion giveaway to the health insurance industry every year," he said. "It was written by healthcare lobbyists, so that's not a surprise. It's an outrage."

"I'm glad Senator Rockefeller is not going to vote for it. I wouldn't vote for it at all under any circumstances," Dean added. Instead, Dean said Senate Democrats should and would end up using the reconciliation process to pass a plan with the public option. "It can be done, and that's how it will be done," Dean said, pointing out that a majority of Senate Democrats still support a more robust bill.

slinkerwink's diary :: :: Bravo, Dr. Dean. Thank you for always calling these kind of stuff out. He wasn't alone in his condemnation of the Baucus bill, since Rep. Grijalva also had a few words about the Baucus bill:

It is telling that Senator Baucus stood alone at todays press conference. There was no Gang of Six, including the absence of Senator Snowe and no Democrats. Even with huge concessions to the legislation, including no public option, it not so shockingly, has not garnered any visible support.

Now that we've seen that Senate Republicans are not going to support any bill, no matter how weak, it is time to start earnest negotiations among Democrats for what is best for America, not what is best for peoples personal politics.


As I have said in the past, a strong public option is the most effective way to achieve our goals of controlling costs, eliminating abuses of patients by insurance company abuses, and providing quality health care to all.

I urge the Senators on the Finance Committee to replace the Baucus plan with legislation that will guarantee that quality, affordable health care that includes a strong public option. Anything less is unacceptable.

The Baucus bill is unacceptable, and it's a huge bailout of private insurers, written by private insurers. One of my friends even wrote about how there are loopholes in the bill to evade the regulations in the bill.

Regulations alone aren't an effective way to control costs because there are NO anti-trust provisions for private insurance companies. There is nothing to prevent private insurers in a national insurance exchange from buying up other companies, and thus creating a monopoly that prevents real, viable competition from happening in the exchange that many have said are necessary to lower premiums. This is the reason why the public option is so important, because it acts as an effective check on private insurance companies by helping to lower the cost of premiums through competition and acts as a necessary governmental model for these private insurers to follow, otherwise they continue their abuses by evading the regulations.

Even with a regulatory framework and an exchange in Massachussetts, premiums are set to go up 10%, with many of the premium increases coming from private insurers like Blue Cross Blue Shield, Harvard Vanguard, and others. Coverage does not equate affordability, and that's the lesson that we learn from the Massachusetts experiment.

Here's what I'd like for you guys to do today---PLEASE WRITE LETTERS TO THE EDITOR about how the Baucus bill is unacceptable, and that you do not want the final conference bill to be like the Baucus bill. Insist on having a public option with no triggers, no pilot programs, or co-ops. Mention that the trigger, the pilot programs being proposed by some in Congress, and co-ops are a delaying tactic on the public option.


And especially if you live in the states of these Democratic Senators on the Finance Committee, CALL THEM OUT BY NAME in the letters to the editor that you write! And ask them to offer an amendment for a public option without triggers, co-ops, or pilot programs.


It's interesting how the debate over the public option moved from trigger to co-ops, then back to the trigger, and NOW to pilot programs for the public option. Pilot programs are a way to prevent the public option from being delivered on a national scale. In order to contain costs of private insurance premiums, the public option has to compete nationally in order to deliver this kind of power. A regional pilot program is just a way to kill the public option because it won't be effective in providing competition on a smaller scale, and it's basically like a regional co-op in terms of scale and cost-effectiveness. It has to be done on a national scale.

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sui generis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
1. so here's the slightly scary part
Nobody in Washington puts forth the tiniest effort without expecting a certain outcome.

What about this outcome has made Baucus go resolutely forward? Is this plan like the real estate three-showing sale?

1. Show them the one they can't afford.
2. Show them the one they would never buy.
3. Show them the one you want to sell them.

Or, does Baucus truly believe somehow this is a foundational piece, because he has other information we don't? It's not going to happen - all the insurance companies in the world supporting your campaigns aren't going to get people to vote for you if it was a bad idea to begin with.

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ashling Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 10:47 AM
Response to Original message
2. Rockefeller is mad as hell
he was on Rachel (or Olberman, I can't remember) talking about it yesterday. He says that he and a lot of others have lots of amendments ready in committee.
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Iwillnevergiveup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 10:52 AM
Response to Original message
3. Time's a-wasting
These Senators apparently think it's okay to fiddle fart around with heath care in spite of the huge crowds that have shown up in Virginia, Los Angeles, and other places to see a doctor or dentist. Max Baucus is an absolute disgrace and needs to go. I posted elsewhere if he gets a lot of flack for his sorry performance, he'll switch his party to what he really is - an obstructionist rethug.
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samsingh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 11:06 AM
Response to Original message
4. hundreds of million lives are at stake and baucus is paying off his friends in insurance
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OHdem10 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 11:28 AM
Response to Original message
5. How the Gang came up with premiums making the middle class
pay more and force them to do this strains belief.

When you have the President out implying costs will go down
and this committee comes up with citizens having 13% taken
out of their paycheck as premium to Insurance Company.
What are they thinking??
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sui generis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:38 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. Obama needs to pick the red pill or the blue pill
cause swallowing both pills won't do much other than confuse him more and give the rest of us a headache.
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IndianaGreen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:40 PM
Response to Original message
7. Baucus bill is a love letter to Big Pharma and Big Insurer
The Doctor is right, again!
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Zoeisright Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 02:53 PM
Response to Original message
8. Go Dr. Dean!!
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