(Politico) Senator Max Baucus worried about health law ‘train wreck’

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, one of the health reform law's chief authors, says he’s worried about a “huge train wreck coming down” if the Obama administration doesn’t improve its public outreach about the legislation.

Baucus, a Montana Democrat who is up for reelection in 2014, sharply criticized the administration’s outreach efforts in a budget hearing on Wednesday. He told Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius that people and businesses “have no idea what to do, what to expect” from the law.

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Filed under: * Culture-WatchHealth & Medicine--The 2009 American Health Care Reform Debate* Economics, PoliticsEconomyConsumer/consumer spendingCorporations/Corporate LifePersonal FinanceThe U.S. GovernmentMedicarePolitics in GeneralSenateState Government* TheologyEthics / Moral Theology

13 Comments
Posted April 18, 2013 at 4:40 am [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Archer_of_the_Forest wrote:

I am sure the effects will be just as good and effective as everything else the Federal Government has implemented in the last 10 years.

April 18, 9:00 am | [comment link]
2. Terry Tee wrote:

It’s a little ironic for him to be concerned about complicated health legislation when he has just voted against simple gun control legislation regarding background checks.  But then he needs votes, and he needs money to campaign with.

April 18, 9:07 am | [comment link]
3. Capt. Father Warren wrote:

Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!  Yep, Max is up for re-election in 2014.  So is Mary Landreiu in LA.  They might all be thinking about their rabid advocacy for this Progressive utopia that they shoved down our throats.  If Republicans/Conservative have half-a-brain [up for debate], they will hang this around their necks because by election time a good number of people will have had a face-to-face encounter with the wonders of Obamacare!

April 18, 9:19 am | [comment link]
4. Katherine wrote:

I don’t know about y’all, but our premiums are up and our co-pay has doubled since the law was passed.  It will only get worse.  And that’s with a major corporation.

Terry Tee, #2, the “simple” legislation wasn’t so simple, and would have done nothing whatever to stop the Newtown shooting, which was the ostensible excuse for moving the bill.  It was never, ever going to pass the House of Representatives.  The entire goal was to get it through the Senate and then use its failure in the House as an election bludgeon next year.  But Obama couldn’t even get it through the Senate, despite some Republican defections.  It was a pointless piece of legislation which would have solved nothing whatever.

April 18, 8:25 pm | [comment link]
5. montanan wrote:

I disagree with Senator Baucus on a great number of issues - the largest of which is his stance on abortion.  I have spoken with him a number of times and have worked with his staff.  He is a politician and has found his way to re-election a number of times, despite being a pretty poor public speaker.  However, with the caveat about his need to be political as a moderate Democrat representing a fairly conservative state, I will tell you that I respect him a great deal.  He is extraordinarily bright.  He is committed to improving the healthcare provided to all in our country - though I don’t necessarily agree with his means, his reasoning is as sound as those with whom I side and I am without doubt about his laudable intent.  Despite being pretty liberal at his core, he has been a better bipartisan member of the Senate than almost anyone, along with his friend (R) Charles Grassley of Iowa.  In truth, I cannot imagine why anyone wants such a job!

April 18, 9:06 pm | [comment link]
6. montanan wrote:

Katherine - the data is that insurance premiums were rising three to five times faster than the rest of the economy before Obamacare.  My own business experienced a 70% increase in a single year - again, before the passage of the ACA.  The provisions of the ACA haven’t really gone into effect, yet, other than the prohibition against pre-existing conditions and the mandate to cover adult children without their own insurance up to age 26.  There are plenty of reasons to be in favor of the ACA and at least as many to be against it.  However, the inflation of your insurance premium is not due to Obamacare.

April 18, 9:12 pm | [comment link]
7. Katherine wrote:

“Free” physicals and coverage for children up to 26 are not free, Montanan.

April 19, 6:49 am | [comment link]
8. montanan wrote:

Katherine, you’re right - nothing is without cost.  However, coverage for people 18 - 26 is generally very low cost, as they have little in the way of chronic illness - which is why they have traditionally eschewed having insurance.  Covering them did not raise my insurance rates 70% in a year, nor did it cause your co-pay to double.  “Free physicals” also didn’t cause either of those things to happen.  I’m not sure that provision of the ACA has taken effect yet - I believe that begins in 2014, though I may be wrong.  Many insurance companies have incorporated ‘no co-pay health maintenance exams’ into their offerings over the past 15 years, since it tends to reduce their ultimate outlays due to finding and treating conditions in earlier stages and at lower costs.

April 19, 8:35 am | [comment link]
9. Capt. Father Warren wrote:

Obamacare is in effect; the taxes have started.  The computerization of all medical records [a very expensive process for many small medical practices as well as hospitals] was mandated by HHS.  Contraceptives and abortion pill requirements are in place.  Your doctors have put on more staff to handle all the paperwork.  None of this is free.  I just finished six months haggling between a doctor’s office and my insurance company over an $87 bill that the insurance company agreed up front they should cover.  But it took six months of dogged effort to get the two entities to agree on what each needed to settle the dispute.  Excepting my time, I can’t imagine how much all this cost.
I really hope I can find a doc who will work for cash; do 99% of what I need and then I can buy a policy to cover me financially for the catastrophic things that come along.  The present system is going to collapse for all the irrational complications we have put on it.
But of course Obamacare was never about health—it was about control.

April 19, 8:57 am | [comment link]
10. Terry Tee wrote:

A pointless piece of legislation?  For shame, Katherine, tell that to the grieving people of Newtown.

April 19, 11:21 am | [comment link]
11. Capt. Father Warren wrote:

The grieveing people of Newton and all the grieving people of Chicago need to hear precisely how pointless Obama’s proposed “gun control” legislation was.  Pointless for two very simple reasons: criminals don’t obey the laws and “gun free” zones attract criminals and those unstable enough to want to create mayhem.  How many mass murders do we need to have in “gun free” zones before someone figures out what that means?

And the legislation was also pointless because places like Chicago have made the decision that they will not enforce the gun control laws ALREADY on the books.  Chicago ranks DEAD LAST in enforcing current laws against criminals.  More unenforced laws only impact one class of people: the law abiding citizen.

So, Chicago, the poster-child for the Progressive Utopia, has the strictest gun laws in the country for disarming law abiding citizens and ranks dead last in enforcing gun laws against criminals.  The fruit of all that good work: the nation’s highest murder rate.  Congratulations Progressive Left, mission accomplished!

April 19, 11:35 am | [comment link]
12. Cennydd13 wrote:

Gun control is a farce in this country, and the reason it’s a farce is the fact that we already have strict laws on the books, but they’re far from being strictly enforced evenly across the country.  What’s legal in Texas, for instance, may not be legal in Maine or Alaska, and vice versa.  Now, this may make sense to some people, but what’s the point in enacting gun legislation if you’re not going to ensure that everyone complies with it?  We don’t need more gun laws, but we do need to enforce the laws that we already have on the books!

April 19, 5:42 pm | [comment link]
13. Sarah1 wrote:

RE: “For shame, Katherine . . . “

Quite the opposite.

Thank you, Katherine, for stating reality.

RE: “The provisions of the ACA haven’t really gone into effect, yet, other than the prohibition against pre-existing conditions and the mandate to cover adult children without their own insurance up to age 26.”

I’ve no idea what montanan is talking about.  Health insurance costs are now rising at far more rapid rates than before the ACA passed and that is because insurance companies are now having to lard up the policies with *even more* “benefits” that many of us do not want, including the lists that both Katherine and Warren provided above, which doesn’t even begin to skim the surface of the bloated mandates that that bill has required.

It’s a sick sick piece of legislation and now *actual* healthcare will suffer for it even more than it did before, and *before* it wasn’t a free market at all.

What a horrible mess collectivization always creates.

April 20, 8:50 am | [comment link]
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