White House Strongly Backs Reid’s Health Reform Bill
The White House formally endorsed Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-Nev.) version of health care reform late Friday, calling it a “historic step forward.—“This legislation meets the President’s criteria for health insurance reform: it provides stability and security to those with insurance; offers access to quality, affordable health care for those who do not have insurance; cuts costs for families, small businesses and the Government; and does so without adding a dime to the deficit,— the White House said in a Statement of Administration Policy.“The Senate legislation includes critical reforms to the insurance industry, so that Americans will no longer have to worry that they will be denied coverage, or that their coverage will be dropped or watered down when they need it most. It covers virtually all Americans and ensures that all Americans with health insurance are protected against high out-of-pocket spending.—The White House also endorsed the public insurance option included in the bill and noted the inclusion of an independent Medicare advisory board.The statement comes as Democratic leaders and the White House continue to woo Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) and Mary Landrieu (D-La.), who have not yet publicly committed to voting against a GOP filibuster on the motion to proceed to the bill.