This Washington Post article highlights what I view as the big hypocrisy in this whole partisan effort to sink the “public option:” We already have a big, government run health system: Medicare. And most people, including Republicans, don’t want Medicare touched.
Opponents of health-care reform should be chanting “No more Medicare!” The arguments that have been made against the public option (a health insurance plan sold and administered by the federal government) apply with equal or greater force to Medicare.
Plan designed by the government? Check. Government bureaucracy? Check. Subsidized? Check. (Medicare does not have to fund itself solely by charging premiums to its members; instead, it is largely funded by a payroll tax levied on all workers.) Able to drive private insurers out of business? Check. Medicare dominates the over-65 market.
If you are against the public option, you should be deeply, fundamentally, bitterly against Medicare.
The public option is not exactly “Medicare for all” (since Medicare is a “single payer” system), but it is like Medicare in that it would be run by the government.
Would the public option lead to everyone hopping on board with the government plan? Possibly, thus resulting in a huge burden on our government and reduced income for private health insurance providers. That’s another issue to be debated.
But please stop with the hypocritical cry of “No government run health system! But don’t touch Medicare! “