The New Face of the Health Care Reform Bill
President Obama's fight for health insurance and health care reform amounts to a veritable all-or-nothing blitzkrieg that will not be stopped until won. Accordingly, the President has further postponed his trip to Asia as the health care vote on Sunday creeps closer. The latest version of the bill, entitled the Reconciliation Act of 2010 was released Friday with some significant changes that are aimed at wavering Democrats. VOA just reported that the health care bill voe may come on Sunday.
The new face of the health care bill comes ahead of Sundays health care vote and includes a number of new provisions. Among the more pressing issues are cost, who will be covered, and how far coverage will extend.
The new bill cites a cost of $940 billion over 10 years. It would be paid for through tax credits and Medicaid expansion. Health insurance coverage would extend to the currently 32 million uninsured with major coverage beginning in 2014. This means 95 percent of Americans would have some form of health insurance coverage.
The pre-existing conditions clause in the previous bill remains. Caps on lifetime coverage as well as prescription drugs and annual deductibles are also addressed. In addition, the number of tax credits has grown in this version of the bill for individuals that purchase insurance. Moreover, the favorite Republican whipping horse, of a government -run plan has been laid to rest.
This health care bill and the upcoming health care vote is not without controversy. The passage of the bill would mean the government would essentially control nearly one-sixth of the nation’s economy. They would also force businesses and individuals to get health insurance. Moreover, the contentious abortion issue remains in the bill. Many opponents criticize the language, which is seen as not going far enough to delineate how far taxpayer dollars will go to fund the matter.
The health care vote is expected to take place on Sunday in the House. Republicans have already vowed to deter the bill at any and all opportunities. Democrats need 216 votes to pass the bill. Currently, as many as 28 Democrats plan to vote against the legislation.