COMMENTARY | Rep. John Conyers revealed that he and Rep. Dennis Kucinich ultimately voted for the health care reform bill, also known as Obamacare, because they see it as a “platform” for achieving what they really want, a government run, single payer system.
Conyers made his remarks to a Cyber News Service reporter after an address at the National Press Club. While Conyers had some reservations about the eventually passed health care reform law, he believed that without it, it would have taken a “decade” to achieve what he and many other liberals want, a single payer health care system.
The theory is that as the health care reform system takes hold, private health care insurance will skyrocket. Eventually many insurance companies will drop out of the health care insurance market, leaving the government to step in to provide a single payer, Canadian style health care system that Conyers says “every other industrialized country” has.
The problem with Rep. Conyers’s strategy is that the exact opposite may occur concerning health care reform. Most polling consistently suggest wide spread support for repealing health care reform and replacing it with a more market oriented system that allows more choice and keeps the government at arms length where medical decisions are concerned.
From revelations of hidden appropriations, to the double counting of Medicare cuts, to the proliferation of health care waivers, to fears about death panels, Americans have soured more on health care reform than they were when it passed about a year ago. Proponents had hoped that Americans would warm to the benefits of health care reform. Instead they have gotten all the more chilled by it.
The fight to repeal and replace health care reform is going to be a running sore through American politics for the rest of the Obama administration. President Obama is certainly not inclined to bend too much on the issue. Passage of health care reform was the signature achievement of his administration. Without it, all he has done is occupy space in the Oval Office, either doing nothing or making things worse.
The probable outcome is not that Obamacare will morph into universal single payer health care. Rather the likely outcome is that it will be repealed by the next President and replaced by something more market oriented. Thus President Obama’s signature achievement will not be the government seizure of health care, but rather sparking the movement to truly reform it. That it will not be a reform to either his or Rep. Conyors’ liking will be a big, fat irony.
Sources: Conyers: Obamacare Is ‘Platform’ for Creating Single-Payer System, Nicholas Ballasay, CNS, March 14th, 2011
Michele Bachmann Finds a $105 Billion Dollar Spending Bomb Hidden in Obamacare, Mark R. Whittington, Associated Content, March 9th, 2011
HHS’s Sebelius Admits to Double Counting Medicare Savings, Mark R. Whittington, Associated Content, March 4th, 2011
Congress to Investigate Obama Health Care Waivers, Mark R. Whittington, Associated Content, February 4th, 2011