Under the Dome

Hagan on health care vote

Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan issued the following statement on today's committee vote on health care reform:

Today, the Finance Committee passed a health care reform bill that prevents insurance companies from turning you away due to a preexisting condition, removes annual and lifetime caps on coverage, and removes co-pays for preventive services. It also expands coverage and ensures that if you like your insurance and your doctors, you keep them. These critical health care reform components were also included in the bill we passed in the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee.

The Finance bill will reduce our deficit, which has been a requirement of mine all along. Chairman Max Baucus worked hard throughout the process to incorporate Republican ideas and gained the support of Senator Olympia Snowe, a Republican from Maine on the committee.

I am committed to working with my Senate colleagues on a final bill that slows down the skyrocketing cost of health care and prevents families from sinking into bankruptcy as a result of one medical emergency.


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Re: Hagan on health care vote

I had the pleasure of accompanying my parents to many, many doctor visits as they neared the end of their lives. I once asked a young doctor if the same tests were necessary, sometimes even during the same week. His response was that certain tests were required so that the doctor's defense would be strong in a malpractice lawsuit. It was his opinion that many tests were performed as a precaution to a lawsuit. My parents reached a point where tests were of no value but they were routinely performed. I would welcome tort reform along with health care reform. The area around our hospital has more lawyer offices than doctor offices. I sometimes wonder how much time the doctor pre-defends his/her actions while prescribing treatment or tests for the patient. I hope healthcare reform does not add government lawyers to the ambulance chasers.

Re: Hagan on health care vote

I have a great deal of respect for the healthy cynicism expressed by captainjack, and I recognize the valid concerns that TOPASSISTANT has raised. I even agree with Paul's position that interstate competition and tort reform are crucial to a viable health reform plan.

Nevertheless, I don't see that either point of view actually contradicts the opinion articulated by melissaprice. Her statements ring true largely because they address the fundamental problem with today's health insurance system: it benefits insurance companies and gives short shrift to patients, doctors, and small businesses. If someone can present a line of reasoning that leads to different conclusion, I and many others are open to persuasion. However, absent such a line of reasoning, I can only conclude that health insurance reform is far more likely to be good for the country than bad for the country.

Re: Hagan on health care vote

Before our useless politicians and government decides to spend more of my grandchildren’s wages they have not even earned yet, they should pay for the promises already made.

Here is what our “Useless Government” is doing with Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid just to name a few.
Medicare Part A, which covers hospital stays, $34.4 trillion in debt; Medicare B, which covers doctor visits, $34 trillion dollars in debt; Medicare D, the drug benefit that went into effect January 1, 2009 is $17.2 trillion dollars in debt; Social Security is only down $13.6 trillion dollars.

The total? If you wanted to cover the unfunded liability of all three programs today, you would be stuck with an $85.6 trillion bill. That is more than six times as large as the bill for Social Security. It is more than six times the annual output of the entire U.S. economy.

The total: $99.2 trillion dollars in debt. Our politicians added $31.5 billion dollars to this debt with SCHIP to cover illegal aliens.

You need to read a short report, America at a Crossroads, GAO-07-171CG, a report on a speech by the former comptroller General of the U.S., David Walker at a presentation by Minnesota October 23, 2006 to see just how bad it really is.

Re: Hagan on health care vote

This quote appeared in melissa's post:

"Sen. Max Baucus said he would revamp his health-overhaul proposal to ease the financial burden for middle-income Americans and pare back a key tax increase."

Let's wait and see if Sen. Baucus is actually able to accomplish this "ease and pare back" proposal. It is never a good time to buy something without knowing the cost. And the poor world economy makes it even a worse time.

I am all for health care reform, tort reform and just about any other type reform but I am afraid that I remain one of those people who read the menu from right to left. Some of the things that get said in Washington never seem to happen the way they said things would happen. Reform may be priceless and for everything else there is Mastercard. But we got into this mess because many could not pay Mastercard. Please don't add much to my Mastercard balance as I am struggling now.

Re: Hagan on health care vote

"The middle class is going to get hammered again."

PaulTerrell get your facts straight. Quit reading those fear inducing websites paid for by the health insurance industry.

"Sen. Max Baucus said he would revamp his health-overhaul proposal to ease the financial burden for middle-income Americans and pare back a key tax increase"

Read: Baucus Aims to Ease Middle-Class Burden in Plan

The fact remains - we need health care reform. The economy needs it, employers who pay health insurance for their employees need it, small businesses need it, women in the 40 states that permit health insurance to jack their rates based on gender need it, the sick and healthy need it, and the young and elderly need it.

The only ones who do not need it are the health insurance companies who are swimming in profits.

Stand up for your fellow Americans and stop spreading lies.

Re: Hagan on health care vote

Let us be honest here. The money to pay for this will not show up out of mid air. This is a another attempt at wealth redistribution. The middle class is going to get hammered again.

Can you really see the government doing anything right and within costs? The military complex spending, post office, medicare, medicaid, trillion dollar stimulus bills, and many more. And I have not even mentioned the inefficiency of the Social Security Administration and our state DMV.

Open up competition across state lines and bring in tort reform that has been proven in other states. But do not bring in the healthcare systems that have bankrupted many states.

Congressional elections are not until the end of next year. Doing it now is too much of a hurray. Do Democrats in Congress really thing we will forget so soon after another wealth grab at the middle class?

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