CEOs Criticize Public Plan As Lawmakers Finalize Bills
Several CEOs at large U.S. companies criticized the public insurance option as Congressional Democrats push to figure out which version should be included in their version of health reform legislation.
Reuters: "Some of the nation's largest companies pushed back against U.S. Democrats' plans to deliver a government-run insurance option in a healthcare overhaul, decrying it as a step backward that would drive up costs for employers and their workers. ... The Business Roundtable, comprised of chief executives at Verizon Communications (VN.N), JPMorgan (JPM.N), General Electric (GE.N), Wal-Mart (WMT.N) and other companies that together employ more than 12 million people, said the federal government is inefficient and would underpay providers. That would result in providers boosting prices for private insurers and employers, the group said on Wednesday" (Heavey, 10/28).
The Hill: "Although the health insurance industry's opposition to the public option has received the most attention, business and healthcare groups are practically unanimous in their opposition and have been since the beginning of the debate. Now that Congress is inching closer to final action, business groups are stepping up their messaging campaigns. The business community has become increasingly anxious as the prospects for the public option have improved on Capitol Hill. ... Unlike the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which is rolling out television ads to fight the public option, the Business Roundtable plans no so campaign" (10/28).