Friday, July 31, 2009

Sen. Jay Rockefeller on Co-ops: "Unacceptable" (with video)

Crooks and Liars, with video (04:31):

Hold back the jello. Jay Rockefeller was on this morning with Andrea Mitchell and complained about the Kent Conrad "co-op" plan which he said was basically unworkable. He then went on The Ed show and hit it even harder.
Jay is a supporter of the public option and was pissed that the co-op proposal was inserted in the Baucus bill since it was never even talked about during the general election. Isn't it nice that Baucus has killed the public option just to work with Republicans? Conservatives don't even have to win elections to get what they want. That's some deal they have.
Ed: It's not going to work. There's really no successful model out there to support the basis of signing on to a co-op. Would you sign on to a co-op or is that unacceptable?
Rockefeller: That's unacceptable and I can almost prove it. We've been in touch with all the folks that oversee, represent all the co-ops in the country on all subjects and they point out that there are probably less than twenty health co-ops in the country. There are only two that really work that well. One in Puget Sound, one in Minnesota, except for those two, they are all unlicensed. All present health co-ops are all unlicensed, they're unregulated. Nobody knows anything about them, nobody has any control over them and nobody has ever said, which is stunning to me, no government organization or private organization has ever done a study to what effect they might have in terms of bringing down the insurance prices.
They are untested, they are unlicensed, they are unregulated, they are unstudied. Why would we even think about putting them in as a control on this massive insurance industry instead of the public option?
There aren't any co-ops throughout much of the country, but to appease the conservative Dems we're supposed to throw six billion dollars around and hope that the states will try to make them workable.
Is this insane? Watch the whole clip, but you get the idea from this one statement. Kent Conrad's big proposal is a complete sham, but President Baucus is trying to cram that down the throats of the country, which will render all health-care reform useless. All hail bipartisanship!
Howie P.S.: If you are a fan of the Group Health Cooperative here in the northwest (like me), this gets complicated. I still want a public option in the plan and I want to keep my GHC!

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