The Day In Bipartisan Futility

Bill Scher

Let’s recap the day’s health care developments.

The #2 Republican in the Senate called the attempted co-op compromise a “Trojan Horse” and “a step towards government-run health care in this country.”

The head of the House Republican Study Committee called co-ops “simply another name for a public option … Patients should be wary of a wolf in sheep’s clothing.”

Meanwhile, the chief proponent of co-ops Sen. Kent Conrad conceded on CNN that he doesn’t expect co-ops to save us much money. (h/t Wonk Room)

CONRAD: The big levers are reforming the delivery system in this country to move to the kinds of integrated systems like Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic that work so well in holding down costs and delivering high quality care, and other reforms, the insurance market reforms, and changing the tax subsidy to health care.

The experts tell us those are the big drivers in terms of altering costs.

JOHN ROBERTS: And would co-ops address that?

CONRAD: No.

So substantively, co-ops won’t do what a robust public plan option can do to stop skyrocketing health care costs.

And politically, co-ops are not accomplishing anything to attract bipartisan support, which only co-op advocates say we need to pass reform.

How many more days will reform have to wait while we put up with such nonsense?

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