Tom Carper/ Olympia Snow Race to the Bottom of Health Care Debate

Tom Carper just announced a compromise plan on health care that would make a public option or co-ops a voluntary choice of the individual states. It is increasingly likely that some mix between carper’s plan and Olympia Snowe’s plan for triggers– creating a non-profit corp that would offer low cost insurance at the state level will end up in a final bill on the president’s desk.

I think either option may be better than what currently exists but probably not a whole lot better. Like other national programs left to the states, either of these plans is likely to result in a race to the bottom in terms of access/costs and quality coverage. with states increasingly holding going out of business sales (like in california), giving states an opt out clause on health coverage mitigates any incentive for them to provide coverage to all their residents.

I support the public option as a comprise, but continue to believe that if the country is going to establish some new mechanism for providing health insurance– triggers– why not go back to considering singler payer, which is more cost effective and comprehensive, and far less bureaucracy than offered by these current hybrid plans.


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