An Internet poll shows that nearly 8 in 10 Americans support a federal health insurance plan for those who can’t afford or can’t get private insurance, and 86 percent say insurance should be available to everyone regardless of health history.
Wow. You wouldn’t know that from the folks shouting and yelling at town hall meetings, or holding up signs with pictures of Obama with Hitler mustaches, or from those trading freely in loaded Nazi terminology when criticizing attempts to reform the ailing health care system in this country. That would be the health care system that ties health care so closely to employment, and that denies health care coverage to the sick or those with pre-existing conditions, that is responsible for a huge proportion of medical bankruptcies , that is is expensive that even many of those who are working can’t afford it. That one.
The pollster says the term “public option” has been “swift boated,” so large is the misunderstanding that has grown up around what it means, Allison Sherry reports in the Denver Post. In fact, only 37 percent of respondents define it correctly. The poll was released at an AARP Forum in Denver in conjunction with Charlie Cook of the Cook Political Report.
One-fourth of those polled believe the “public option” is a national health care system, similar to the one in Great Britain.
“These two words have become radioactive, they have been swift-boated,” said William Mann, senior vice president of Penn, Schoen & Berland Associates, the firm that conducted the poll. “There is a real misunderstanding.”
For those who want to understand what they’re talking about, the Sacramento Bee takes a look today at how health care reform affects businesses, including the perspective of a small business owner worried about added costs, and including a useful compilation of the key details of three competing plans working their way through Congress.
— Rita Hibbard