There’s been a lot of commentary in the last 24-48 hours about the fate of the public health insurance option, and/or the idea of a Medicare buy-in. Health Care for America Now details the often-shifting positions of Senator Joe Lieberman, who has opposed the public health insurance option with at least three Democratic Senators. Nate Silver at Five Thirty Eight reminds us of how hard the challenge was and far far the idea came, even getting a majority of Senators on board. We’ll have more analysis and commentary once we see where the dust settles.
Ezra Klein of the Washinton Post has a post that details the situation, and especially the timing moving forward: Votes starting as soon as Thursday lead to a timetable that extends to Christmas just to report the bill off the Senate floor.
And then there’s conference committee, with a House bill that is superior in many ways.
That’s the one thing I want to emphasize tonight. This is not the time for the final evaluation of the bill, for taking a step back, for either giving up or going along. There’s still work to do! The health reform fight isn’t over..
There’s lots of fights on very important provisions still left to be won or lost in Senate and in conference committee. We need to continue to advocate on the very crucial issue of affordability, and on issues like employer responsibility, insurer regulations and oversight, inclusivity, financing, as well as continuing to look for opportunities to include public health insurance options.
The fight isn’t over to make it the best bill it can be–or to prevent it from getting worse. We still have work to do.