One can argue over details, but Mr. Schumer is on the right track. It should be possible to design a system in which public and private plans could compete without destroying the private coverage that most Americans have and for the most part want to keep.Really? Americans, “for the most part,” want to keep the same private system they have now? Nothing like starting with a false premise.
In general, he suggests that a public plan should have to comply with the same rules and standards as private plans.Another words, separate, but equal to the same dysfunctional system we have now. I’m liking it already.
The public plan could not be supported by tax revenues or government appropriations but by premiums and co-payments. It would have to maintain reserves, like private insurers, and provide the same minimum benefits as all other insurers in the exchange. It could not compel doctors who want to participate in Medicare to also participate in the new public plan. And it would be run by different officials from those who run the insurance exchange to lessen the likelihood that federal officials would give unfair advantages to their program.Let me see if I’ve got this right: Restructure the public plan by eliminating all the advantages the government already has with Medicare and veterans health care, by building in smaller pools of providers along with similar premiums and deductibles. That would by default force the public plan to add in enough “profit” to help pay for the new plan, without tapping into the largess of the governments buying power.
Now that’s a level playing field and basically no change at all. Two parallel systems with the same disadvantages.
Ah the power of money.