Republican lawmakers have proposed what they describe as a revenue-neutral, free-market-based alternative to universal health care.
The bill is a response to the plan supported by President Barack Obama that would establish a separate government insurance program to compete with private insurance programs.
In contrast, the Republican proposal — called “The Patients Choice Act” — would redirect the $300 billion already spent on federal subsidies for employer-based insurance to annual tax credits of $5,700 for families and $2,300 for individuals to buy private insurance.
“There is no question we cut the uninsured in half,” Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) told CNSNews.com during a conference call Wednesday. “This is revenue neutral. Why would President Obama not support it? His plan costs another $1.5 trillion (over 10 years). Our bill forces insurance companies to have to compete.”
It gives Medicaid participants an option:
The legislation, if enacted, also has grants $5,000 for low-income earners to spend annually on health care. That would give Medicaid beneficiaries an option for another plan. Medicaid is the federal-state health insurance program for the poor.
Effectively, it unties health insurance from employment and gives people more choice. It would also help with Medicaid solvency. All without astronomical tax increases in one form or another, or suffocating bureaucratic control over private medical decisions. The Democrats will hate it.