The American people are smarter than you think Mr. Pethokoukis ["How Tom Daschle Might Kill Conservatism," usnews.com]. Obama polled better on healthcare because his plan was better. You can say whatever you want about healthcare, but it will always be an issue that Democrats win because, to the core , most people believe healthcare should be mandatory just by being a U.S. citizen. Most Americans don't believe that healthcare should be a normal business with a sole purpose of profiteering.
Comment by Terrence J. of GA
The difference between the United States and Europe on healthcare is that a large percentage of the American population is used to getting state-of-the-art care and timely services with continuing advances. If socialized, Medicare takes that away (which it will do by taking away the profit motive) and the people who see the quality of their care slip will revolt. There are reasons people come from other countries to get healthcare services in the United States . . . such as not wanting to die while on a waiting list.
Comment by Joe of OH
I'm one of those lucky people who get to "buy insurance from private companies." It costs 25 percent of my gross income and has risen some 250 percent in price in the last five years. It's about the cheapest that's available on the market. Some people in my situation (i.e. people whose employer or Uncle Sam doesn't pay the bills) pay much more. Now, as much as I like being the rugged individualist, I am not pleased with my current insurance coverage, and the free market has done nothing to improve it. "Obamacare" sounds OK to me. I don't believe that any form of government healthcare will turn us into a modern-day serf class, any more than government regulation of our water and electricity does.
Comment by John Brown of NY
The best thing for the healthcare system in this country would be to get rid of the insurance companies. They are big bureaucracies that add absolutely no value. Their sole job is to deny coverage wherever possible. In doing this, they cost the country far more than they save. All that they accomplish is giving their executive's fat paychecks and their employees a job and some paper to push. Once we get rid of the middle man—the insurance companies, the cost of healthcare will come under control. Without this, it will keep on spiraling up
Comment by Dave of CA
The U.S. can afford national healthcare if we scale back corporate welfare, eliminate Bush's tax cuts for the super rich, and end the financially draining Iraq debacle. Moreover, expanding availability of healthcare services will drastically reduce expensive, wasteful emergency room visits and ultimately lead to a healthier, more productive society.
Comment by Marc of IL
It's no secret: Republicans oppose universal healthcare not just because they feel no empathy for those who have no money—although indeed they do not—but because they know that it will be incredibly popular. Like the New Deal, it will give Democrats a lock on national politics for decades. Many conservatives have expressed their fear of this over the years. Unfortunately, "it may be good for Americans but it is bad for us so we hate it" is not a winning position. It's amazing that it succeeded in 1993, but it was because Hillary was an amateur then. The team that is forming now is tough and hardened and well organized, like Obama's election campaign. They will not lose this one, and most Americans will be grateful. The rest will shout "socialism" and such, but no one will pay attention.
Comment by Chuck Lesker of AK
Universal healthcare may pass. But it will ultimately fail. Why? Pure demographics. We aren't having enough babies. The population will skew older and older. We'll either have healthcare that we will have to supplement out of our own pocket or we will crush young people with taxes. Not to mention horrible waiting lists for needed surgeries.
Comment by Geoff of NJ
Instead of complaining about how awful it will be, why don't you work in conjunction and be a part of helping to make a positive change to our outdated healthcare system? Healthcare should be for all, not just for ones lucky enough to be born with a silver spoon or good genes. There are always going to be people that are a drag on the system, but it's time we focus on Americans and improving our own. In the long run, it will be better for all Americans instead of just for the wealthy.
Comment by Karen of FL
Has anybody noticed that in addition to those 47 million without health insurance, many employers are offering only "bare-bones" coverage with initial out-of-pocket deductibles of more than $1,000? I would hardly say these people are insulated from knowledge of healthcare costs. I would say when combined with the steadily declining purchasing power of their wages, they mostly will forego care until it reaches a point of misery and substantially higher treatment costs.
Comment by Darin of MO