DC Dispatch: White House compromising on Obama’s public option already?

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As HMO execs gathered at the Ritz Carlton in Georgetown, their hired hands on Capitol Hill grilled the Adminisration in hearings today about cutting payments to ineffective HMOs under Medicare and about the public option in the president’s health plan. 

It’s a little early for compromise, since there’s no health care reform legislation even on the table, but Office of Manangement and Budget Director Peter Orzag already signaled compromise, before the debate has even begun.

Here’s how Congressional Quarterly reported the Senate Finance Comittee discussion of the Administration’s softening:

[Senator] Grassley also said he was concerned that if a health overhaul
includes a government-run insurance option, it would drive out private
insurance plans that would not be able to compete.

Orszag stood by the public plan option, though he left the door open for compromise.

“We’re trying, at this point in the process, to keep everything on
the table. There are, obviously, different ways of designing a public
plan that would have different effects,” Orszag said, promising to work
with Grassley to minimize his concerns about private insurers.

We know it’s been a tough week Orszag, but how about keeping your cards a little closer.  Why negotiate against yourself before the first overhaul bill is in print?

Consumer Watchdog
Consumer Watchdoghttps://consumerwatchdog.org
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