I’m with Ezra. I can’t do this. I tried, mostly because some of you asked. But I can’t bring myself to treat this as an actual piece of legislation:
The difference is clear from the first page. The bill released by House Democrats states that the legislation is meant “to provide affordable, quality health care for all Americans and reduce the growth in health care spending, and for other purposes.” The “amendment in the nature of a substitute” by John Boehner says, “The purpose of this Act is to take meaningful steps to lower health care costs and increase access to health insurance coverage (especially for individuals with preexisting conditions) without —
(1) raising taxes;
(2) cutting Medicare benefits for seniors;
(3) adding to the national deficit;
(4) intervening in the doctor-patient relationship; or
(5) instituting a government takeover of health care.”
You can hate the Democratic bills, but they are at least thorough enough to say what they are going to do and then tell you how they are going to do it. You may think it costs too much, or has too much regulation, or is unfair to the insurance industry – but at least it’s there.
This plan promises the impossible. It will lower costs and increase access without collecting any more money, making any cuts to anything, or changing anything about the way we practice medicine. Right. I mean, who knew it was going to be so easy? We should have done this years ago!
I wish Speaker Pelosi would call their bluff. I’d like to see a CBO score of this “proposal”. Tell me how many more people will actually be covered. Tell me how much their insurance will cost. Tell me how much this bill will reduce the deficit.
People can make fun of the length of the other bills, but one of the reasons they are so long is that they actually say something. As I said before, there are serious conservative ideas for health care reform. This “bill” contains few of them.