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  • Reid 2.0: Even Higher Premium Taxes

    As part of Senator Harry Reid’s indefatigable effort to make each new version of the Senate health care legislation worse than the previous one, his Manager’s Amendment restructures and expands the health insurance premium tax included in the earlier versions of the Senate bill. The earlier versions would have imposed … More

    The Senate Health Bill: Federal Micromanagement of Health Insurance

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-NV) giant new health care bill contains the same provisions as the other House and Senate bills to establish Federal micromanagement of all private health insurance. Like the others, the Reid bill would subject all private health insurance — whether purchased from an insurance company … More

    Promised Health Care Savings: Don't Bet On Medicare Cuts

    Forget the President’s rhetoric about bending the health care cost curve. The House of Representatives will soon vote on legislation (H.R. 3961) that effectively repeals the cost control mechanism included in the Medicare physician payment update formula back in 1997. Passage of H.R. 3961 would add another $210 billion to … More

    You and Your Health Care Lobbyist

    As critics have repeatedly point out, once Congress starts specifying minimum mandated coverage requirements for health insurance there will be no end to the lobbying to maximize the “minimum” that you will have to pay for in your health plan. Well, it turns out Congress is already behaving exactly as … More

    The House Health Bill: Federal Control Over Americans' Insurance

    The House health bill (H.R. 3962) creates a new minimum federal standard benefit package that will eventually apply to nearly all health plans, and establishes a new “Health Benefits Advisory Committee”. The Committee, housed within HHS, will make detailed recommendations, which the Secretary of HHS would then impose on all … More

    Twenty Questions on Reid's Opt Out Plan

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) announced that he would bring to the Senate floor a bill that includes a new “public plan,” but with a provision allowing states to “opt-out.” In response to a reporter’s question, Reid said that states would have until 2014 to opt-out. Setting aside the … More

    A Health Bill for the Record Book!

    On Monday the Senate Finance Committee unveiled the legislative text of S. 1796 — dubbed “America’s Healthy Future Act” — revealing to fans of legislative “bloatware” a new one for the record book! Not only does this latest entry in the Congress League’s 111th season “monster bill” competition outstrip all … More

    Health Care Co-ops: What's Inside the Box?

    Last month, Senator Kent Conrad (D-ND) suggested that maybe some form of “consumer cooperative” might be a politically acceptable alternative to the “competing public plan” idea. Since then, growing opposition to the “public plan” has fueled growing interest among Sen. Conrad’s colleagues in his “co-op” idea. However, as with the … More

    No Public Plan Option in Medicare Part D

    Last Sunday, in an appearance on FOX News Sunday with Chris Wallace, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) repeated yet another justification for including a “public plan” option in health care legislation. Since other advocates of a public plan have recently been offering the same justification, it is worth taking … More