Dem rep: Public option is path to single payer

posted at 3:04 pm on September 6, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Actually, that’s about the only thing Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) gets correct in this interview on our local public television station with Almanac’s Kathy Wurzer and Eric Eskola. Gary Gross caught this moment of honesty, but really, there’s so much in this three minutes of television beyond the admission of the Trojan horse in the House bill that this almost pales into insignificance:

WURZER: Politics is the art of compromise.

REP. ELLISON: It is.

WURZER: So how are you all gonna compromise?

REP. ELLISON: Most of us are co-authors of HR676, which is a single-payer bill so we feel like we’ve already compromised. I think that the reality is the public option has been scored by the Congressional Budget Office as saving $150 billion, so this actually helps deal with the fiscal responsibility issues…It offers choice, which is a good thing…

ESKOLA: Isn’t the public option really just a step towards the single payer that you want so much?

REP. ELLISON: Yes but the reality is that for many people that’s not what it is.

Rep. Jan Schakowsky has said the same thing on multiple occasions, so this is not exactly a smoking gun, or at least not the first. Better, though, are some of the other hilarious assertions Ellison makes in this clip. For instance:

  • Ellison’s idea of “diversity” is having a teleconference comprising people who all believe the same thing.
  • The progressive caucus “feels like we compromised” because they had to drop an explicitly single-payer bill for one Ellison admits is a Trojan horse for the same thing.
  • Ellison lauds the same CBO scoring that shows that HR3200 will cost a fortune and drive up the deficit in both the near- and long-term.

The health-care “exchanges” are just like the stock market or a farmer’s market, according to Ellison, and this is really ludicrous.  The government isn’t setting up the exchanges to create more choice, but to limit choices to government-approved plans.  Furthermore, the government doesn’t set up stock exchanges or farmers markets.  People do that on their own.  Insurers don’t need a government-owned exchange to offer products to consumers, either.  They offer products to them now.  The “exchange” is another word for licensing, which restricts choice by definition.  Ellison says, “This is competition,” when he says in the very next breath that it will lead to a single-payer system.

At the end, Ellison mentions that the US is 37th among industrialized countries for its health-care system, by which I presume he means life expectancy, which is roughly correct.  Plenty of other factors than health care go into life expectancy, however, including diet, exercise, and other lifestyle choices.  If we want to compare actual health care, it seems to me that these numbers make more sense: For cancer survival among women, the US comes in first at 62.9%, and for cancer survival rate among men, the US comes in first at 66.3%.  Those numbers directly relate to quality of care and innovation in treatment.

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I think that the reality is the public option has been scored by the Congressional Budget Office as saving $150 billion, so this actually helps deal with the fiscal responsibility issues…

Could we get a fact check on that?

JusDreamin on September 6, 2009 at 3:09 PM

Sounds fishy.. we should send it to fla… oh wait, that was taken down. Drat.

Enoxo on September 6, 2009 at 3:10 PM

..why all the contortions? Why don’t they just fix what’s broken and move on?

Try:

(1) Competition across state lines.
(2) Tort reform.
(3) Portability.
(4) Covering pre-existing conditions.
(4) Offering a plan only for those who need it (i.e., 4-5 millions, NOT 50 millions.)

..in other words, HR 3400 NOT HR 3200.

VoyskaPVO on September 6, 2009 at 3:12 PM

It’s such an honor that his man represents me – NOT

He’s even more embarassing than Franken and that’s saying something.

gophergirl on September 6, 2009 at 3:13 PM

gotta love Minnesota…..why do i still live here….

ohhh yah….

alexraye on September 6, 2009 at 3:17 PM

..why all the contortions? Why don’t they just fix what’s broken and move on?

Try:

(1) Competition across state lines.
(2) Tort reform.
(3) Portability.
(4) Covering pre-existing conditions.
(4) Offering a plan only for those who need it (i.e., 4-5 millions, NOT 50 millions.)

..in other words, HR 3400 NOT HR 3200.

VoyskaPVO on September 6, 2009 at 3:12 PM

(1) Control
(2) The laaayyyaaarrrs
(3) Control
(4) Control
(4 again) Illegals
*done

VegasRick on September 6, 2009 at 3:18 PM

Ellison mentions that the US is 37th among industrialized countries for its health-care system

Please.

I’d love to see what went into the rankings.

The US healthcare system is responsible for countless breakthoughs and advances over the years. People from those other 36 countries come here for treatment, they come here to study in our universities, they come here to work in our labs, hospitals and research centers. Our doctors also travel the world.

I’d also add that many of those breakthroughs are the direct result of charitable contributions to places like The Dana Farber Institute (I mention that because it’s local, and the Jimmy Fund is one of only 3 charities I give to anymore). Gee, aren’t the Dems also trying to hamstring charities?

I dislike these people.

reaganaut on September 6, 2009 at 3:18 PM

I dislike these people

Careful with those exremist statements reaganaut. Or i’m gonna tell on you! Now what was the number to that website again???

JusDreamin on September 6, 2009 at 3:21 PM

Trying to help the President?!?!?!?!?

I thought your job was representing the People…..

alexraye on September 6, 2009 at 3:21 PM

I am one of the 47 million without insurance due to pre-existing conditions..I say go to a cash system, and trim the insurance companies and get the government out of health care altogether. I pay cash for everything now and would be happy with a catastrophic plan, like with home insurance, instead of the “health payment plans” we now have which are only ponzi schemes either by insurance companies or the government..Americans have been getting screwed by everyone forever. It needs to stop….

adamsmith on September 6, 2009 at 3:22 PM

Now what was the number to that website again???

JusDreamin on September 6, 2009 at 3:21 PM

It’s a 3 letter word.
J – O – B – S
Jobs!

VegasRick on September 6, 2009 at 3:23 PM

With this kind of representation, we are SO screwed.
Fight on.

ndulik on September 6, 2009 at 3:23 PM

These guys in Congress are squeezing BO’s nutsack ever so gently whispering in his ear ‘don’t go soft on us now Barry, or I start ripping’.

tatersalad on September 6, 2009 at 3:24 PM

I think that the reality is the public option has been scored by the Congressional Budget Office as saving $150 billion, so this actually helps deal with the fiscal responsibility issues…It offers choice, which is a good thing…

The CBO said no such thing. Because if the CBO *HAD* said such a thing, Obama would’ve been shouting it from the rooftops.

Skywise on September 6, 2009 at 3:26 PM

No whee do I see the basic fact that a not for profit hospital charges $300/Tylenol.

I’m just a simple engineer but that kinda needs to be addressed.

jukin on September 6, 2009 at 3:29 PM

Interesting: A Mostly-Crazy Muslim Nutjob lets the Cat out of the Bag

Didn’t he get the memo about keeping stumm on this?

Janos Hunyadi on September 6, 2009 at 3:31 PM

Leftist Dem. Rep. Keith Ellison would fit right in with his brethren at Mecca or Medina or Tehran. Which is why I cringe when those places are called conservative.

jgapinoy on September 6, 2009 at 3:31 PM

OT: Mark Hemmingway jokes that the “administration… thinks ‘vetting’ has something to do with universal health care for pets”. Priceless.

clorensen on September 6, 2009 at 3:33 PM

Ed,

You might want to correct your transcript. As written, it makes no sense.

ESKOLA: Isn’t the public option really just a step towards the public option that you want so much?

Should read something like: Isn’t this really just a step towards the single payer health insurance that you want so much?

notropis on September 6, 2009 at 3:33 PM

“Help the president git what he wants’. Is this guy a moron? What word is “git?”

federale86 on September 6, 2009 at 3:36 PM

Some of our states are filled with idiots. Take Minnesota. Please.

Ted Torgerson on September 6, 2009 at 3:36 PM

federale86 on September 6, 2009 at 3:36 PM

So, in that whole clip, your biggest complaint is in how Ellison pronounces the word “get?”

notropis on September 6, 2009 at 3:38 PM

Plenty of other factors than health care go into life expectancy…. [EM]

True enough. And plenty more within health care, as “life expectancy” is presently defined by the rankers. So, the proposed end of life panels will do what to that ranking? Hey, maybe we could improve it by moving up the front end of the count by a trimester or so. You know, to account for our advances in reproductive health. Oh wait….

Barnestormer on September 6, 2009 at 3:45 PM

Life expectancy level is 37th?

So I can live free and die at 65 or live as a bot and die at 68?

Limerick on September 6, 2009 at 3:45 PM

This guy…either sorely mis-informed or and outright liar, not worth listening to or reading in any case.

jeanie on September 6, 2009 at 3:48 PM

You want to create choice? Let insurance companies sell in any state. Duh.

Daggett on September 6, 2009 at 3:52 PM

Interesting: A Mostly-Crazy Muslim Nutjob lets the Cat out of the Bag

Didn’t he get the memo about keeping stumm on this?

Janos Hunyadi on September 6, 2009 at 3:31 PM

Hahaha.

Blake on September 6, 2009 at 3:57 PM

I think Catherine Bragg explained it well: let the free market sort it out. If you want better service and lower prices, then remove ridiculous restrictions. As a business owner, she was limited to dealing with 6 insurance companies as opposed to thousands.

Blake on September 6, 2009 at 3:59 PM

I always liked the saying Love America or Leave it!!! BUT these idiots really do need their own homeland because they are soooo out of touch with American values and beliefs.

mobydutch on September 6, 2009 at 4:05 PM

I have yet to see what he learned at Harvard. They certainly forgot to teach him anything about economics in any form. His education is mainly street sense or so he thinks he picked up with Jerimaiah and the crown while experimenting with drugs. He is a bitter and vengeful racist plain and simple. That includes the lady with the big arms that the media loves.

bluegrass on September 6, 2009 at 4:14 PM

Good for California!!! I love the ceremony.

mobydutch on September 6, 2009 at 4:26 PM

Don’t forget that illegal aliens will be covered…

… and the program will be run by the IRS.

I wonder why everyone keeps forgetting that…?

Seven Percent Solution on September 6, 2009 at 4:30 PM

I used to get email responses from my senator that the US was 42nd in life expectancy as compared to other countries.

I provided this reference:
http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2009/08/16/whats_scary_about_health_care_reform_97901.html

and noted that the article identified a 2006 book “The Business of Health,” by economists Robert L. Ohsfeldt and John E. Schneider, which determined where the US would rank in developed nations if homicides and accidents were factored out. Their answer – the US would be in first place.

I asked my senator to research this and stop sending out false information. I haven’t had the “42nd” response in quite a while.

Wouldn’t it be great to actually have a MSM where they researched this stuff and kept everyone informed?

Don’t any of these new “reporters” understand the block buster investigative reports that they could do?
Some young news person could write their name in news history just by some basic investigation and putting out reports.

4thQTR on September 6, 2009 at 4:49 PM

Doh!

CWforFreedom on September 6, 2009 at 4:54 PM

Ellison is Van Jones lite.

GunRunner on September 6, 2009 at 4:58 PM

Lies and deceptions by this administration will never stop. It is all they know and have proven they are incapable of the truth. Van Jones made Jeremiah Wright look like Bugs Bunny. This guy was definitely a threat to this country and Jarrett is on tape at the nutroots convention saying how lucky the White House was to recruit him to their team. Scary stuff on Pennsylvania Avenue.

volsense on September 6, 2009 at 4:59 PM

… the US comes in first at 62.9%, and for cancer survival rate among men, the US comes in first at 66.3%. Those numbers directly relate to quality of care and innovation in treatment.

… and there you’ve hit the nail on the head Ed. The left went searching for statistics to cherry-pick in order to bolster its point. Life expectancy has numerous factors that contribute — among those factors is health care, but deconvolving healthcare contribution from other factors is difficult at best. The statistics you cite are directly attributable to the quality of the health care system available and yet the health reform proponents neglect those statistics. Kinda makes one wonder, eh?

AZfederalist on September 6, 2009 at 5:01 PM

I think that the reality is the public option has been scored by the Congressional Budget Office as saving $150 billion, so this actually helps deal with the fiscal responsibility issues…
Could we get a fact check on that?

JusDreamin on September 6, 2009 at 3:09 PM

It probably does save $150 Billion.
But that just drops it from $1.8 Trillion to $1.65 Trillion.

mrt721 on September 6, 2009 at 5:02 PM

Didn’t he write that Marxist screed Invisible Man?

John the Libertarian on September 6, 2009 at 5:11 PM

So…. are you folks up in MN going to keep this clown next year?

n0doz on September 6, 2009 at 5:12 PM

So…. are you folks up in MN going to keep this clown next year?

n0doz on September 6, 2009 at 5:12 PM

Of course, his district will keep him. They’re about 90% in agreement with everything he says. It’s Minnesota’s “sustainable urban environment” district.

notropis on September 6, 2009 at 5:16 PM

For cancer survival among women, the US comes in first at 62.9%, and for cancer survival rate among men, the US comes in first at 66.3%. Those numbers directly relate to quality of care and innovation in treatment

Brilliantly put. That will be my talking point this month.

Mojave Mark on September 6, 2009 at 5:22 PM

Not compromising means: We get it all.

Compromising means: We get it all in 10 years.

Socratease on September 6, 2009 at 5:22 PM

he can really string together cliches.

JohnBissell on September 6, 2009 at 5:28 PM

The 37th number comes from the 2000 WHO report on health care systems (based on 1997 data). You can read the report here to understand all of the numbers behind it. Here is how the US ranked in the different categories that go into the 37th ranking:

Attainment of goals
Disability-adjusted life expectancy: 24th
Health equality in terms of child survival: 32nd
Overall level of system responsiveness: 1st
Distribution of system responsiveness: 3rd-38th
Fairness in financial contribution: 54th-55th
Overall goal attainments: 15th

Health expenditure per capita in int’l dollars: 1st

Performance on level of health (life expectancy vs. per capita expenditures): 72nd

Overall health care system performance: 37th

Somehow, they weigh the goal attainment and the performance vs. expenditures to come up with the 37th number that is often quoted.

There are two numbers that really drag our ranking down. One is the “fairness in financial contribution,” which of course is based on the WHO goal of government-financed health care.

The second number is the life expectancy vs. per capita expenditures. I think that has a lot to do with the American lifestyle in general. We also try to save everyone at the moment — from the tiniest of babies given up on in other countries to the frailest of seniors who want those extra couple of months. On top of that, we generate almost all of the technology and have to pay for it before it becomes affordable for poorer countries.

Kel-C on September 6, 2009 at 5:28 PM

Always good to hear what our Muslim representatives have to say.

/sarc

2Brave2Bscared on September 6, 2009 at 5:29 PM

So? What if it does lead to a single payer? This article is do dumb. If majority of Americans all of a sudden decide they want a single payer due to the success of the public option and vote in reps that will get them that, what is wrong with that? Cons as so backwards as usual.

Afrolib on September 6, 2009 at 5:30 PM

It’s always been absurd to use life expectancy as a way to measure the quality of a nation’s health care system. The U.S. has higher levels of deaths due to traffic accidents and gunshot wounds than European and other industrialized nations do. We also have higher levels of obesity and diabetes in our population, due to our sedentary lifestyles and love affair with junk food. But even though the Lefties know the “37th overall” number is B.S., they keep using it as a justification for a government takeover of our healthcare system. We need to correct the record every time they repeat this lie.

AZCoyote on September 6, 2009 at 5:38 PM

..why all the contortions? Why don’t they just fix what’s broken and move on?

Try:

(1) Competition across state lines.
(2) Tort reform.
(3) Portability.
(4) Covering pre-existing conditions.
(4) Offering a plan only for those who need it (i.e., 4-5 millions, NOT 50 millions.)

..in other words, HR 3400 NOT HR 3200.

VoyskaPVO on September 6, 2009 at 3:12 PM

When you own the right of life, and death over people, you have all the POWER. That is all this is about. They could give a fig about your health, and life. It’s all about Power, and control.

capejasmine on September 6, 2009 at 5:38 PM

Ellison is an idiot and a disgrace as a representative. He is obviously a hyper partisan pursuing an agenda that is not that of his constituents. How people like this continue to get elected is a tragedy.

America1st on September 6, 2009 at 5:54 PM

Insurance Exchanges as Public Option

I heard a similar thought expressed on Meet The Press from Tom Brokaw. He called the Federal Employees Heath Insurance a public option. The Federal Employees Heath Insurance is an insurance exchange where employees pick among several private insurers. An insurance exchange is a government regulated market. I’ve never considered an insurance exchange a public option. The public option is government run health care such as SChip, Medicaid, and Medicare, …

Putting aside the debate about the problems of an insurance exchange I wonder if President Obama on Wednesday is going to broaden the definition of the public option to include an insurance exchange in order to sell it to the public with the real intent to use Medicare style system as the public option.

Further there are at least two Democrat and/or Republican bills that extend the Federal Employees Heath Insurance, an insurance exchange, to the public. If this is how Progressives define the public option why aren’t they compromising on these bills. After all isn’t the goal of Progressives to have only the public option for people.

It seems to me we might be in for some double speak on Wednesday, insurance exchange as public option, and setting us up for a bait and switch to medicare style public option.

epdagger on September 6, 2009 at 5:59 PM

Ellison another example of Affirmative Action Representation. Or the Peter Principle; people advancing at least one step above their level of competence.

GarandFan on September 6, 2009 at 6:01 PM

re: 37th

These numbers are pure BS. The US is something like 25th when it come to infant mortality. Reason? Because in the US any live birth, even if the baby lives for 5 minutes is counted as a “birth”. In Europe, only babies at least 26 weeks or older are counted. So if a baby is born at 25 week, 6 days in France and dies the next day, it’s as if the birth never existed. And so you get rankings that show the US at 25 and France at 1.

The easiest way to measure is this: how many people from The USA went overseas for medical treatment vs. the other way around. I don’t have that data but I am pretty sure the ratio is about 1000:1 of non-Americans coming here vs. the other way around.

angryed on September 6, 2009 at 6:13 PM

Will the revelations ever stop from these congressional clunkers?

tarpon on September 6, 2009 at 6:21 PM

California showing signs of Life.

Dr Evil on September 6, 2009 at 4:24 PM

Several donated hearses, vehicles cost:$0.
Permit for event:$?
Graveside service for Health care bill: P-r-i-c-e-l-e-s-s.

I hope to heck this is repeated and repeated and repeated throughout the land, even in D.C. on Sept. 12.

Chewy the Lab on September 6, 2009 at 6:38 PM

It’s such an honor that his man represents me – NOT
He’s even more embarassing than Franken and that’s saying something.

gophergirl on September 6, 2009 at 3:13 PM

gophergirl I’m with you, he’s mine too, and he couldn’t draw a downward cost curve much less explain one. It is so aggravating that someone this challenged for intelligence remains in office and represents me.

mngirl on September 6, 2009 at 6:40 PM

<blockquotegophergirl I’m with you, he’s mine too, and he couldn’t draw a downward cost curve much less explain one. It is so aggravating that someone this challenged for intelligence remains in office and represents me.

mngirl on September 6, 2009 at 6:40 PM

That is because you are out of touch with the regular people.. especially the constituent he represents. May i recommend you move to Michelle Bachmann’s district.
You will probably feel at home there.

Afrolib on September 6, 2009 at 6:47 PM

progressive caucus

Communist used to call themselves communist and their ideology communisum. When the terms became a hinderance to the communist party USA advancing their goals they began using the term progressive to decribe those advocating socialism and communism or programs that they found supported their agenda. He would have been correct had he said it was a a caucus of the communist members of congress and representatives of minority groups that would benifit from a socialistic government.

As far his saying he was trying to give Obama what he wanted; it fits into a communist view in which the government makes decisions on what is best for the people of which each contributes according to their ability and each recieves what is availabe according to their need, as determined by the government.

Franklyn on September 6, 2009 at 7:18 PM

Afrolib on September 6, 2009 at 6:47 PM

While I disagree with your advice to mngirl — after all, you can always become a community activist and try to educate your neighbors — your point that Ellison represents his district well is correct.

Keith is actually an old friend of mine — “old” as in I haven’t talked to him in probably six or seven years. But he always struck me, and still strikes me, as very open about his liberal views, and very honest — for a lawyer [disclaimer: he did get me out of a legal jam back when, and did it pro bono.]

notropis on September 6, 2009 at 7:19 PM

Oh, and “affirmative action” he’s not. He’s as sharp a progressive as you’re likely to find (whatever that means.)

notropis on September 6, 2009 at 7:21 PM

But he always struck me, and still strikes me, as very open about his liberal views, and very honest — for a lawyer [disclaimer: he did get me out of a legal jam back when, and did it pro bono.]

notropis on September 6, 2009 at 7:19 PM

Keith is a wonderful rep. He has really been through a lot especially over his religious beliefs. The man is a true American

Afrolib on September 6, 2009 at 7:29 PM

Former marine speaks for all of us. Enough is enough.

ConservativeTony on September 6, 2009 at 7:40 PM

Former marine speaks for all of us. Enough is enough.

ConservativeTony on September 6, 2009 at 7:40 PM

Preaching to the choir. Who cares..

Afrolib on September 6, 2009 at 8:01 PM

Wasn’t this gentleman one of the disrespectful so called representatives and or candidates that loved to call GW a liar on a regular basis? Honestly what the heck is wrong with Minnesota? First this guy the Stewart Smally.

david kumbera on September 6, 2009 at 8:17 PM

Preaching to the choir. Who cares..

Apparantly, those present liked what the man had to say. Are they all part of some “choir”? Or perhaps you’re upset yyour guy doesn’t get any more standing ovations.

ConservativeTony on September 6, 2009 at 8:21 PM

Actually 37th is how we rank according to the WHO, not much better than Cuba. However, that WIDELY quoted report doesn’t actually measure quality of health care. It actually is a measure of quality of SOCIALIZED health care, although it takes a lot of digging to find that out.
Example sub-ranking within that WHO report we score 37th on: percent of government that are women. Now, to some liberals this is as important as percent that survive cancer (of which we are just about the best), however to non-idiots, it has nothing to do with health care.

GardenGnome on September 6, 2009 at 8:24 PM

So? What if it does lead to a single payer? This article is do dumb. If majority of Americans all of a sudden decide they want a single payer due to the success of the public option and vote in reps that will get them that, what is wrong with that? Cons as so backwards as usual.

Afrolib on September 6, 2009 at 5:30 PM

Currently “a majority of Americans” have “decided” that they don’t want any changes to health insurance funding.

By your logic, no bill is needed.

massrighty on September 6, 2009 at 8:42 PM

By your logic, no bill is needed.

massrighty on September 6, 2009 at 8:42 PM

You do realize that went right over his head.

CWforFreedom on September 6, 2009 at 9:13 PM

You do realize that went right over his head.

CWforFreedom on September 6, 2009 at 9:13 PM

Yup.

massrighty on September 6, 2009 at 9:31 PM

Actually AfroLib, No we can’t just decide we want something and vote it in any time we want. The form of government we are trying desperately to hold on to is NOT a democracy, it’s meant to be a Constitutional Republic.
The fact that its constitution has been “interpreted” into some plastic-fantastic “living document” notwithstanding, we are still prevented by its provisions from explicitly voting away our individual freedoms just because we need some itch scratched or appetite fed.
And you should be very very thankful for that AfroLib, and watchful that it never be weakened even the slightest bit. Without that set of bars to popular emotion, you and I and everyone here will only hold our property and our freedom and even our lives at the whim of the next “Great Leader” and his impassioned crowd of believers.
Think about that awhile, and maybe you’ll begin to get the slightest glimmer of the glowering monster we see slowly emerging from under the smiley-faced veneer.

Lew on September 6, 2009 at 9:41 PM

What has Ellison and Afrolib’s unders in a wad, is that we understand ‘health’ has nothing to do with this debate.

It’s completely about control of money (ours) and control over who lives or who does not. For this administration, that’s like buy one get one free.

PS-Dr Evil-great links!

MalindaH on September 6, 2009 at 9:41 PM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vNWLlUmttag

bucsox79 on September 6, 2009 at 10:27 PM

He mentions “longterm care” does that equal nursing home care?

Is that also in Obamacare?

4of8 on September 6, 2009 at 11:14 PM

I love the fact that Obama is on the phone with the “progressive” (socialist) caucus and discusses this with them, but claims to be bipartisan. Stand up America. The life you save may be your own.

Christian Conservative on September 6, 2009 at 11:17 PM

Ellison’s idea of “diversity” is having a teleconference comprising people who all believe the same thing.

Actually, Ellison said that they had a diverse groups on the left, not that the groups were diverse because they were on the left.
Hey, at least Ellison admits that he is on the left.
Kudos EM on a great analysis regarding life expectancy numbers which directly relate to quality of care and innovation in treatment. By the way, another factor is our relatively high rate of vehicular traffic fatalities.

Ira on September 6, 2009 at 11:34 PM

Newsbusters has a story of a California Tea Party mock burial of Obamacare. I pray it’s not premature.

Christian Conservative on September 7, 2009 at 1:28 AM

The idea of ‘competition across State lines’ is one that is best left to the States, not the Federal government. Nothing is preventing States from opening up to insurers across State lines and regularizing systems on their own to do that. The Federal role would be to standardize a number of pre-existing systems or to set up a method for States to otherwise come to some common agreement on how such insurance is offered.

That leaves local insurers who provide purely local facilities and practices a chance to remain out of the hands of larger companies that will then ‘standardize’ them and remove locally adjusted services and pricing. If you truly want less Federal government and want cross-state health insurance, then the place to start is not at the top, but the bottom: work with your State governments to do this.

Mind you that doesn’t take getting an Act of Congress passed, just some hard, local lobbying and work. And since it keeps the Federal government OUT you don’t have to pay the Federal government FOR it.

I still place tort reform first: it has worked well where tried, like Texas, and really should be investigated by other States, as well. Folks do want their States to be involved in purely State and local matters, no?

ajacksonian on September 7, 2009 at 7:41 AM

Actually 37th is how we rank according to the WHO, not much better than Cuba. However, that WIDELY quoted report doesn’t actually measure quality of health care. It actually is a measure of quality of SOCIALIZED health care, although it takes a lot of digging to find that out.
Example sub-ranking within that WHO report we score 37th on: percent of government that are women. Now, to some liberals this is as important as percent that survive cancer (of which we are just about the best), however to non-idiots, it has nothing to do with health care.

GardenGnome on September 6, 2009 at 8:24 PM

You beat me to the punch, thanks for posting…..

Onward Forward and Upward!!

RoxanneH on September 7, 2009 at 10:04 AM

That is because you are out of touch with the regular people.. especially the constituent he represents. May i recommend you move to Michelle Bachmann’s district.
You will probably feel at home there.
Afrolib on September 6, 2009 at 6:47 PM

What if the “out of touch people” decide they don’t WANT to pay for your healthcare as well as their own? And yes,he sure does represent his district–Uptown yuppies,(who love their tax write-offs almost as much as they love socialism,)marxist wannabees,”artistes,” “urban pioneers,” U of M students,illegal aliens,the Somali community,(those who are not back in Africa blowing themselves up,)Yep, “regular” people.The entitlement mentality abounds in Ellison-land and he encourages it.
Bachmann’s district? Farmers, factory workers,people who actually pay taxes and support the sorry lazy butts of the “regular” people in Ellison’s District.Yeah, LOTS of Minnesotans feel at home there.
You incredible elitist.

lizzee on September 7, 2009 at 10:21 AM

Ellison is an example of one of those who has an agenda that includes doing as much damage to this nation as he can.

He is also an example of a PC elected representative who gathered votes because of his uniqueness, not necessarily his qualifications or his positions. (Sound familiar?)

archer52 on September 7, 2009 at 2:11 PM

With a respectful nod to the intelligent Minnesotans who post here, I have to say that the populace of Minnesota must have a collective IQ of about 75.

Only a state of morons and imbeciles could have brought us Ventura, Smalley, and Ellison. Aside from the few who carry water for conservative causes, Minnesotans have become both a laughingstock and the shame of this country.

Elessar on September 7, 2009 at 10:16 PM