A beaming Nancy Pelosi let the bats out of the belfry as she unveiled the HOUSE health care bill this morning. Claiming it will cost $900 billion over the next ten years (as if that’s some kind of bargain and Americans should be happy-dancing in the streets) we’ll see what the Congressional Budget Office has to say after the numbers are crunched. Including a government option and a requirement that all employers must provide health insurance, this batty bill is very similar to health care plans being developed by Senator Harry Reid (D-Nevada) who is working his own voodoo on combining bills passed by two committees.
READ Pelosi’s 1,990 page House Health Care bill here. Good luck! Hope you aren’t mummified before you finish.
From FOX News:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi unveiled a retooled health care overhaul plan Thursday intended to bridge differences among Democrats and open a history-making floor debate on extending health insurance to nearly all Americans.
Speaking on the West Front of the Capitol surrounded by Democratic lawmakers, Pelosi, D-Calif., said the House’s version of a health care reform bill will include a government-run insurance option and extend coverage to 36 million uninsured Americans. She said the bill will lower patient costs and reduce the national deficit.
“The Affordable Health Care Act will ensure, again, affordability for the middle class, security for our seniors, and responsibility to our children,” Pelosi said, adding that the legislation puts a major emphasis on preventative care.
Pelosi wants to have the legislation on the floor next week — with a final vote before Veterans Day, Nov. 11 — which would give President Obama a bill to sign by year’s end, numerous Democratic officials said.
The bill would require nearly everyone by 2013 to sign up through their employer, a government program or a new kind of purchasing pool called an exchange. Tax credits would be available for most of those buying coverage through the exchange. They would have the option of picking a new government plan or private insurance.
During the transition years from 2010-2013, a temporary government program would help people turned down by private insurers because of medical problems, lawmakers said. After that, insurers no longer could refuse to provide coverage to the sick, nor could they charge more because of poor health of the insured.
The plan also calls for a significant expansion of Medicaid, the federal-state health program for low-income people. And it would impose a requirement on employers to offer insurance to their workers or face penalties.
A concession to Democratic moderates appears to have cleared a path for Pelosi to move forward. Democratic leaders agreed to the moderates’ demand that the new government insurance plan must negotiate payment levels with hospitals and doctors, instead of imposing its rates, as liberal lawmakers would have preferred.
“This has always been a matter of trying to pull together 218 votes,” said Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Calif
Read more here.
Senate Democrats may modify this bill to avoid a filibuster, but what those modifications may be remain to be seen.