President Obama Releases His Own Healthcare Plan proposal-Has No Public Option


President Obama officially released his own health care reform proposal on Monday in a last-ditch effort to unite the Democratic Party around some sort of comprehensive legislation.

Coming days before the much anticipated bipartisan health care reform summit this Thursday, the 11-page White House proposal is being pitched as a foundation upon which lawmakers can build. Presidential aides stressed repeatedly on a call with reporters Monday that Republicans will have opportunities to amend it.

“We view this as the opening bid for the health meeting,” said Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer. “We took our best shot at bridging the differences. We think this makes some strong steps to improving the final product. It is our hope the Republicans will come together around their plan and post that online prior to the meeting so that the American people have a chance to go look at it… and be thoroughly informed heading into this meeting.”

But it clearly remains a Democratic effort. Working off the Senate’s bill while melding key provisions from the House’s version, White House officials are proposing to add another $75 billion in costs to the legislation, bringing the total up to $950 billion over the next decade — all of which will be offset by increased revenue.

Among the major changes in the president’s proposal:

  • It removes the $100 million in Medicaid funding that Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) had secured for his home state of Nebraska — funding that, after intense criticism, even Nelson now wants removed.
  • It adopts the House’s more generous measures to help individuals purchase insurance, and adopts the Senate’s approach when it comes to penalizing individuals who don’t buy insurance — basing the penalty on a reduced flat dollar assessment or percentage of income, and including a “hardship” exemption for families who simply cannot pay the fine. (This paragraph has been corrected.)
  • It closes the Medicare prescription drug “donut hole” coverage gap by 2010 — choosing the House’s language rather than the Senate’s (which would provide a 50 percent discount for only certain drugs in the hole). How this conforms to the deal that the White House cut with the pharmaceutical industry at the beginning of the health care reform process is unclear.
  • It adopts the Senate’s model for health insurance exchanges (virtual marketplaces for consumers to compare and buy coverage) making them state-based as opposed to national. One plugged-in activist told the Huffington Post that this could be because it would be impossible to pass national exchanges into law using the Senate’s simple-majority reconciliation process.
  • It adopts the Senate’s abortion provisions, which are more moderate than the aggressively anti-choice measures adopted in the House.
  • It uses the Senate’s revenue provisions, though it goes a long way toward pacifying those concerned about the so-called “Cadillac tax”. The threshold at which health care plans would be hit by that tax would be raised from $23,000 for a family plan to $27,500. And the provisions would not kick in at all until 2018.
  • It includes a new wrinkle: establishing a national health insurance authority that would help states combat insurers that institute unreasonable premium increases. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) introduced this same proposal last week.
  • Finally, despite a late-stage push for the White House to include a public option for insurance coverage in the final bill, the president’s proposal does not include any element of government-run insurance.

“There is not a public option in here,” said Pfeiffer, before insisting that the president does support the provision.

Here’s the Obama Proposal

With the health care summit scheduled for this Thursday, the White House is hoping that this foundation will get even a sliver of support from the Republican caucus. But aides aren’t holding their breath. Calling for an up-or-down vote on the bill, Pfeiffer nevertheless declined to surrender the idea that Democrats would pass the legislation in the Senate using reconciliation — the parliamentary process that precludes filibusters.

“This package is designed to help us [use reconciliation] if the Republican Party decides to filibuster health care reform,” said Pfeiffer. “That was certainly a factor that went in to how we put this proposal together.”

Obama’s proposal is designed to fill the role traditionally played by House and Senate negotiators in conference committee — bringing together disparate factions around one cohesive reform package. White House aides said that they consulted and worked with members of Congress when drafting their approach. Whether they have the necessary support of the Democratic Caucus to get it passed, however, is still very much an open question.

“The proposal we are putting on line is informed by our discussions with the House and the Senate leadership,” Pfeiffer said. “But it is the president’s proposal.”

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14 comments on “President Obama Releases His Own Healthcare Plan proposal-Has No Public Option

  1. If it is weak.. why is that? Meaning is he buckling under pressure from special interests? And if so, can he be labeled a “Progressive”, or Liberal? Does he get his pass revoked?

  2. This guy called the president is an absolute fuckin idiot!!!! He will never get it. He just better do what israel says. I love the black alfred e newman. Sat nite live every day of our lives. LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This weak wimp wont have the balls to push it thru with 51 votes. He is a clueless puppet that is in well over his inexperienced head.

    and this is from a 37 yr old black male

  3. He sure isnt too eager to redistrubute the establishments wealth now is he??

    Looks like He is makin the rich richer.

    Community organizer, lol

  4. I never labeled Obama a progressive.. or a liberal.. so I have no idea what pass your talking about.. Obama gave a weak healthcare bill.. thats more than obvious..

  5. “…the 11-page White House proposal is being pitched as a foundation upon which lawmakers can build.”

    It’s either going to be a public option or an exchange that includes cheaper alternatives.

  6. Only a naive person or someone not following politics would call Obama liberal or progressive.. Its anice label the right uses to galvanize their base.. But Obama is pretty damn conservative on alot of things..

  7. We Want A Strong Government-Run Public Option NOW!!

    A LINE IN THE SAND – From jacksmith – WorkingClass

    Call your representatives and demand an answer. Do you or don’t you support a public option. Do you or don’t support democratic MAJORITY RULE! We DEMAND! to know.

    YOU! are dying and suffering needlessly every day

    Why we need Government-run universal healthcare ASSURANCE

    My Fellow Americans and People Of The World

    A strong Government-run MEDICARE like Public Option is STILL! CRITICAL!

    We have had a long hard struggle to find out what would be the BEST! that this congress and the Whitehouse could do to fix our highly dangerous, poor quality, most costly, and MOST! disgraceful healthcare delivery system in the world. It is clear that congress can do much more for the American people than what is proposed so far.

    It is clear that congress can pass a strong GOVERNMENT-run public option CHOICE. Available to everyone on day one. Expand Medicare and not levy any new taxes on workers healthcare benefits and plans. LET THIS BE YOUR LINE IN THE SAND!

    Lastly, there can be NO! INDIVIDUAL MANDATES without a strong Government-run MEDICARE like Public Option CHOICE. Or the American people WILL! and SHOULD! revolt with an all out CIVIL WAR against congress and this Government.

    House and Senate progressives and the tri-caucuses should aggressively push for the inclusion of a strong Public Option, Medicare expansion, and no new taxes on workers healthcare benefits and plans. If the obstructionist kill meaningful healthcare reform, then you should kill this bill. Because it will be far worse than the healthcare disaster we have now. It’s failure will be on the obstructionist heads. And they will be punished and replaced.


    What is proposed in the Senate bill is the worst case scenario for health-care reform. It would shift trillions of taxpayer, public and private dollars into the hands of the private insurance industry (The single most costly, deadly and dangerous product sold in America). And it would compel by law millions of Americans to financially support this oxymoronic criminal enterprise. You cant have a individual MANDATE WITHOUT A STRONG PUBLIC OPTION CHOICE!

    You will have NO! realistic way of controlling cost and quality. Cost will continue soaring through the roof bleeding the American people dry, and KILLing our economy. And our quality of healthcare will continue to decline below our current ranking of “WORST! quality of healthcare delivery in the developed World”.

    From the very start, the American people have been crystal clear about what they wanted. They wanted a humane single payer system like the rest of the developed world has (HR676). Or at least a humane strong GOVERNMENT-run public option CHOICE!! This is what the American people gave the democrats control of the house, control of the senate, and control of the Whitehouse to do.

    Those of you that can, should prepare now to remove every member of congress that fails to support YOUR healthcare reform with a strong Public Option, Medicare expansion, and no new taxes on workers healthcare benefits and plans. Run against them in teams if you have to. But take them out. And replace them with a strong single payer or PRO PUBLIC OPTION CHOICE candidate.

    Now! is the time to bring maximum pressure on your members of congress. Contact your representatives and spread the word.

    The Public Option


    I have to tell you now that the H1N1 virus is a man-made WEAPON OF MASS DESTRUCTION! and TERROR! It is a WEAPONIZED version of a flu virus. It has swept the planet infecting millions. And causing a global pandemic that has killed tens of thousands, and injured millions.

    The H1N1 virus is the product of the DISGRACEFUL, GREED DRIVEN PRIVATE FOR PROFIT MEDICAL INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX! It was released in the U.S. in Texas in early January of last year, but not recognized until around April 2009 in California. The reason I know this is because when it came to America, it came to see me FIRST! How sweet…

    This was around the time the MEDICAL INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX! assaulted the Whitehouse with all their devils deals to cripple and weaken YOUR! healthcare reform. Especially your right to have a single payer system like HR676 (Medicare For All) which most of you wanted.

    They don’t even want you to have your HUGE!!! compromise position of a strong government-run MEDICARE like Public Option CHOICE. To compete with their DISGRACEFUL, GREED DRIVEN, MURDEROUS, PRIVATE FOR PROFIT PRODUCT (The single most costly, deadly and dangerous product sold in America).

    They also wanted to take away your rights to have your government meet it’s responsibility to use it’s full power to regulate, negotiate, and control drug cost, healthcare cost and quality. Something every other civilized country in the developed World has done for it’s people. Their Greed! moral degeneracy and lack of patriotism knows no bounds.

    Many of you will remember that before we knew about H1N1. I posted a open message to the President and Congress warning them to be vigilant about their health, and cautious about any medical advice they received. As I said then “they will not hesitate to try and hurt you”.

    The U.S. and the World have been under a BIOLOGICAL TERROR ATTACK! for over a year now. It is CRITICAL that We The People Of The United States take away control of our healthcare system from the GREED DRIVEN MEDICAL INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX!

    For our own National security, and the security of the world.

    A Strong, government-run, MEDICARE like Public Option CHOICE. Available to everyone on day one, with the full unfettered power of the federal government to regulate, negotiate, and control cost and quality. Would be the most workable way to deal with this global crisis at this time. Including patent suspensions as needed for national security or the greater good.

    As an American I invite the peoples of the World to help us fix our healthcare crisis. And bring pressure on our government to meet it’s responsibility to protect global security by controlling, and removing the corrupting influence of GREED and the PRIVATE FOR PROFIT motivations from healthcare in the U.S. and around the World.

    I call on the governments of the World and the global intelligence community to track down these MASS MURDERERS, and bring them to justice. CONNECT THE DOTS! And be vigilant that they don’t slip in another viral strain on you under the cloak of H1N1 sequestration.

    Further, the proposed patent protection on biologic’s must be stripped from the US bill. And greatly shorten/restricted, or abolished completely. This is a grave danger to humanity and global security.

    We must be strong and insist that healthcare reform be done right for the American people. Or everyone loose’s.

    This is all I can say in a message post. I’ll try to find a way to tell you more later.

    God Bless You My Fellow Human Beings

    jacksmith – Working Class

    p.s. The so-called nominal H1N1 virus is designed in such a way as to make it more lethal to children and young adults. The medical community must be more vigilant of secondary bacterial infections in the young caused by H1N1. And remember, a viral infection is also a transfer of genetic code to you. Think about it, and be vigilant. 😦

  8. @Davey D

    …and the funny part is, many of these other countries that are more socialist than the U.S. has stated this fact. This place is moderate at best. The shock and ridicule is laughable…

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