Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Kicking In

Here comes the healthcare law.

The first stage of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul is expected to provide coverage to about 1 million uninsured Americans by next year, according to government estimates.

That’s a small share of the uninsured, but in a shaky economy, experts say it’s notable.

Many others — more than 100 million people — are getting new benefits that improve their existing coverage.

Overall costs appear modest at this point, split among taxpayers, employers and individuals who directly benefit, although the biggest part of the health care expansion is still four years away.

That would explain this:

Although they’ve called repeatedly for repeal of the Democrats’ new health reform law, some senior Senate Republicans have not endorsed a bill that would actually do it.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.), GOP Conference Chair Lamar Alexander (Tenn.) and Conference Vice Chair Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) have all argued that the reforms — passed in March without Republican support — will hike costs and erode services, and therefore should be scrapped. Yet they haven’t signed on to their party’s repeal proposal.

That’s because they haven’t figured out a way to go to voters and sell repealing the law without making it sound like they’re either owned by the insurance companies or that they’re just doing it for political reasons.