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According to Huffington Post, Single-Payer Health Care Favored By House Progressives If Court Strikes Down Obamacare

Health & Medicine Policy Research Group (HMPRG)
June 27, 2012

Download the post from today's Huffington Post

This article appeared in today's Huffington Post in antipation of Thursday's Supreme Court ruling.

WASHINGTON -- The last thing House progressives want is for the Supreme Court to strike down President Barack Obama's health care law. But if the high court rules Thursday that some or all of the law is unconstitutional, progressives are ready to renew their push for the model of health care they wanted all along: the single-payer option.

"It's easy to see it's a good idea," Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), co-chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, told The Huffington Post. "It's the cheapest way to cover everybody."

Ellison said all 75 members of the caucus have already signed onto a bill by Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) to create a single-payer, publicly financed, privately delivered universal health care program. The proposal would essentially build on and expand Medicare, under which all Americans would be guaranteed access to health care regardless of an ability to pay or pre-existing health conditions.

House progressives pushed hard for a single-payer option, such as the "Medicare for all" approach, during the health care reform debate in 2009. But House Democratic leaders couldn't come up with the votes to pass the proposal, and progressives ultimately caved on the idea in order to pass the president's plan, on the reasoning that some reform was better than none at all.

Asked why progressives think a single-payer option could advance this time around, Ellison said if the Supreme Court strikes down some or all of the existing health care law, it shows that the individual mandate at the heart of the law -- a concept originally backed by conservatives -- was a failed approach.

"We've tried it the right-wing way. Let's try it the right way," he said. Read the full article...