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What is Heritages Reaction to President Obamas Announcement on Health Care?

Flanked, again, by doctors in lab coats, President Barack Obama gave yet another speech Wednesday afternoon urging Congress to pass his health care reform plan. Heres a fact check:

  • The President again claimed his plan lowers health care costs. It doesn’t.
  • The President again claimed his plan would not give government bureaucrats or insurance company bureaucrats more control over health care. It does.
  • The President again claimed that if you like your plan, you can keep your plan. If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. That simply is not true.
  • The President again said his plan gives the American people the same health care as Members of Congress. It doesn’t.
  • The President again claimed his plan is paid for. It is not.

The only new wrinkle in this speech was President Obama’s call for an up or down vote on health care reform. Again the White House is completely out of touch with reality. The Senate has already passed a version of Obamacare. It is currently sitting ready for a vote in the House of Representatives. The House could pass Obamacare into law by an up-or-down/simple-majority vote tomorrow if they so desired.  In like manner, the House already passed a version of Obamacare too.  And had the Senate passed that version, instead of their own, Obamacare would be law right now.

But now the President is claiming he has some new plan that he all of a sudden wants a brand new vote on in the Senate. President Obama says he is open to four specific conservative ideas, but the White House has produced no details or even legislative language for this new plan. And even if the White House ever does produce such language, it would then have to go to the Congressional Budget Office for scoring.

More importantly, simply adding so-called conservative ideas to the bill does not change the fundamental direction of the proposal. The bills before Congress, including the Presidents new additions, would still result in a massive shift of power over health care financing and delivery of care to Washington politicians and bureaucrats. The public has spoken, and it does not want a federal takeover of health care.

Conservatives should continue to press the Administration and leaders in Congress for bipartisan solutions that are based on elements of common ground, including letting states take the lead on health reform, tackling the tax treatment of health insurance, sensible insurance market reforms, and an honest commitment to fixing existing health care programs that the government already controls.

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