Health Care Reform Critic's Refuted

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The NY Times reports:

The Congressional Budget Office [CBO] said Monday that the Senate health bill could significantly reduce costs for many people who buy health insurance on their own, and that it would not substantially change premiums for the vast numbers of Americans who receive coverage from large employers.

I would like to leave this article there with the NY Times quote. But, alas, I must respond to critics' arguments I have heard before.

Those who would poo-poo the CBO, are very likely the same people who CITED the CBO when it first reported on an anticipated House version of the Health Care Reform bill which said the initial cost would be over a trillion dollars and would no lower the deficit but increase it. It would seem such critics are cherry pickers, and will condemn the this independent CBO when it doesn't like their findings, and use their research as a megaphone when results support their argument. The CBO crunches numbers based on proposed scenarios for legislation. Their methodology and reliability is the same regardless whether the results support Democratic Party or GOP positions.

Those who pedal the false allegation that the government will take over American health insurance are to be regarded as paranoids of their own imagination. Current legislation would insure most of those not now covered or who will lose their insurance in the future. This bill in no way attempts to put private insurance out of business. The numbers are in by the CBO. The Senate version of the bill would reduce costs, not increase them, for many people who buy insurance on their own (not employer provided insurance). If costs would go down for private insurers, OBVIOUSLY, those companies would not be declaring bankruptcy, as price increases would be a step to avoid bankruptcy though some corresponding lost market share in the short run.

Additionally, it would change premiums for the vast numbers of Americans with employer health insurance. Same conclusion follows. Those private insurers providing employer based health insurance would not be bankrupting over the Senate version of the bill. Therefore, those who continue to rant that this reform will increase costs for the majority and constitutes a government takeover of the health insurance industry have no basis in fact for their claim. Further, they are liars engaging in deception to further their own personal interests, not those of America and American health care insurance consumers, or those who want health insurance and can't for any of a number of reasons, get it.

The best argument critics can put forth honestly, is that the Senate bill is not in its final version, and the Senate bill will be further compromised by the conference committee that will resolve differences between the House and Senate versions, and therefore, the CBO results on the current Senate version of the bill is irrelevant. Final legislation will not be what this Senate version is. Hence, reform could still end up costing Americans more.

However, since there is no provision in either the House or Senate bills to take over the health care industry and socialize it, the final version of the legislation will not move in that direction either. It wouldn't pass if it did and everyone knows it.

The Senate version of the bill provides enormous benefits to those without insurance at reasonable and affordable cost, insures all Americans of a health insurance policy throughout their lifetimes should they lose their private insurance for any number of reasons from unemployment to pre-existing condition, and does this without increasing the cost of health care insurance for large numbers of Americans.

Taxes will go up on the very wealthy, not anyone else. It's in the bills.

Critics will have a valid argument in speculating that this reform bill, if passed, may increase our deficits in the short run, and fail to lower the increases in health care costs in the long term. Conservative Democrats and all Republicans insured that would be the case by rejecting previous options which could have held costs in check in the short and, especially, longer term. But, that is what legislation is, the bartering and compromising process of getting to consensus which has a form that can achieve sufficient votes to pass. It is American. It is Constitutional. And it has been our way of legislating since the founding of our nation, and even before.

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This page contains a single entry by David R. Remer published on December 1, 2009 1:57 PM.

Senate Vote Moves Health Care Reform to Debate. was the previous entry in this blog.

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