Obama has suggested shifting the focus to popular proposals such as banning denial of coverage to those with medical problems. That particular fix is unlikely because it would encourage people to put off getting health insurance until they get sick, driving up the cost of premiums for everybody else.
“In health care, everything fits together,” said Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va. “It’s very hard to say we can cut this out and do that.” Banning pre-existing condition denials would have to go hand-in-hand with coverage for all.
Hard to imagine how the Democrats can convince the American people that health care has been reformed if insurance companies aren’t reined in on the pre-existing conditions issue. Only people living in an out-of-touch bubble would think that’s a good political move.
And, before any policy wonks weigh in with a 10-minute explanation of how these policies are inter-related, let me say, I get that. But, I’m talking about the politics of the issue. The President made it a tenet of his campaign to fix pre-existing conditions. In fact, it was the top item on the website of the transition’s plan to “Make Health Insurance Work for People and Businesses — Not Just Insurance and Drug Companies”:
Require insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions so all Americans regardless of their health status or history can get comprehensive benefits at fair and stable premiums.
This is one part of reform that people get — and expect.