Wednesday, March 3, 2010

President's Speech

Has just been completed....I watched as I cleaned my office. This is the first time I have heard him couch the proposal in terms of the wide variation of possibilites: on the left a 'gov't run health care system' and on the right a 'reduction of regulation in the hopes that things would improve' and placing 'his proposal' in the center. In policy terms, the Senate bill is quite center and he invoked the notion of building on the current system.

Update: here is text.

The only other thing that caught my ear was his saying something along the lines of 'the cost of our approach is about $100 Billion per year but it is paid for primarily from within the system because much of what we spend in non productive.' Something like that....I can't find the text yet. I was thinking, 'thanks for the set up Sen. Coburn' on that one. As I wrote last week, the most puzzling part of the Summit for me was Sen. Coburn absolutely hammering away that one in three dollars spent on health care is non-productive, which actually helps make the case for financing coverage expansions via Medicare cuts.

I thought the President was also effective at asking for an up or down vote on health care. This is of course laying the stage for a clean up bill after the House passes the Senate bill. I found him persuasive. Someone who thinks all of this is a socialist plot will not. The question is what will folks in the middle think? I really don't know.

Finally, I thought his statement that he wasn't sure of how the politics of this work out, but that he thinks that it is the right thing to do at this time regardless of the politics. Amen.

Update: interesting article focusing not only on the politics and policy of health reform but the need to explain/make the case to skeptics and what reform says about first year of Obama presidency.

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