Let me preface this by saying these are my own views and not necessarily the views of my company. I have a general disclaimer on my profile, but because this hits "close to home" I feel the need to repeat it here.
For those who missed it, the text of the speech can be found here: http://www.cbsnews.com/sto
1. Agreed. We HAVE to do something to help our uninsured. To me this is nothing less than a moral obligation for a company with our size and wealth compared to the rest of the world.
2. The numbers. I'm not convinced the proposed changes are going to happen quickly enough to achieve the kind of savings he is talking about. Is he even TALKING to any actuaries?
And then, seriously, 900 billion is supposed to equal recent tax cuts on the "wealthiest Americans"? I'm curious as to what income level puts a family in that category? Be prepared, it may be MUCH lower than any of us "middle class" Americans thinks.
On the other hand, I've always known #1 would cost, and we as a country have to bear that cost one way or another. We just need to be honest about who is paying for it, and not say that it is just "the wealthiest Americans" when it is more likely the "wealthiest" 80% or so.
3. I did not appreciate his dig against insurance companies. For months AHIP, the health insurance association, has been saying exactly what he proposed, that if there is an individual mandate there would be no need for the pre-existing conditions exclusions that currently exist. Yet the way he said it, it was as if he was "forcing" this upon the industry, as if health insurers are the adversaries. AHIP, under a different form, was adversarial towards "Hillary Care" but they have taken a different stance this time, SINCE BEFORE THE ELECTION, and have endeavored to be partners on this. It may score political points in a speech to paint insurance companies as the enemy, but it's dishonest, or at least disingenuous. This is not "speaking plainly" to the American public.
For more on AHIP's Campaign for an American Solution, click here: http://www.americanhealths
4. There was not enough meat. I still don't know what the proposed Health Reform Bill DOES. I know there is a public option, which I was unsure about previously, but that's about the only thing I know tonight that I didn't know this morning.