Saturday, February 20, 2010


Reaching Out across the Aisle

My Republican friends state that Obama and the Democrats have shut the Republicans out of the discussion of the changes in the health care system. I think about this assertion and I wonder about it. My Republican friends are sincere. The news media seem to lend credence to their claim. I still wonder.

It seems to me that Obama reached out and across the aisle from the very beginning. He took a proposal to reform the health care system that was very similar to a plan Republicans had presented as an alternative to President Clinton's plan. Obama's plan is very similar to the plan enacted in Massachusetts and to a plan proposed by some Republican legislators here in California a few years ago. The features of this "Republican" plan are as follows:

The Republican plan does not include the option of "Medicare for all," or any other non-profit plan sponsored by government. Mr. Obama was careful not to include such features in the plan he proposed, although when his more liberal or progressive supporters asked, he said he wasn't opposed to such features.

Obama proposed that the nation enact the Republican plan (of a few years ago) for reforming the nation's health care system. If that isn't "reaching across the aisle to Republicans" I don't know what is. I have to believe that the Republicans really don't want any reform at all.


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