Health care win-win
“(Obamacare is) a huge train wreck coming down.” That’s what Democratic U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, one of its chief architects, said back in April. Three months later, with the employer mandate being delayed – forcing more workers to rely on federal subsidies to cope with overheating, profit-driven insurance company premiums on the health exchanges – the tracks are starting to separate. Once again, Democrats have proven their eternal ineptitude.
As for Republicans – with their multiple sabotage attempts, pointless repeals and repackaging of the status-quo – they have underlined their cold-hearted indifference. A patient-centered health law replacement? Is that with or without crosshairs?
On behalf of the business community, Republicans have long opposed the employer mandate and supported the individual mandate. Now that it has been delayed, they still can’t find it within themselves to seize the moment and finally do something constructive on health care.
Bumbling Democrats should offer to nix the employer mandate. In return, Republicans should agree to allow a public option on the exchanges, which would reduce the cost of taxpayer-funded federal subsidies and provide real competition.
This fiscally responsible compromise could be achieved, provided both parties step up and sever themselves from the hips of special interests. Doubtful.