Pelosi Seeks to Make Health Reform Bill More Liberal by, Stephanie Condon / Sept 23, 2009
When House leadership brings a final health care bill to the full House floor, it may be more liberal than moderate House Democrats expected, according to reports.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is planning to include in the bill a tax on wealthy Americans, as well as a more robust government-run health insurance plan (or "public option"), abandoning the compromises leaders in a key committee worked out with the moderate Blue Dog Democrats, according to Roll Call.
The original tri-committee health care bill introduced in the House would have raised taxes by 5.4 percent on taxpayers making more than $1 million a year, but some Democrats have opposed the measure.
The original House bill also included a public option that moderates in the House Energy and Commerce Committee made less robust. The Blue Dogs in the committee worked out a deal with committee leaders to make a public option negotiate payment rates with medical providers — instead of dictating them. This is intended to put a public option on a "level playing field" with private insurers. Pelosi, however, reportedly plans to peg public option payment rates to Medicare payment rates.....