Thursday, June 18, 2009

Blue Dog Dems: Call Them on Real Health Reform!

Want to know who's holding up a vote on a strong public plan option?

51 House Blue Dog Democrats are gonna vote on health reform Here's what they intend to do. The faith community has targeted these errant Dems and gotten CA members to back off on the 'trigger' proposal. Thank you!!! Looking forward to other reports. - Ellen Shaffer

Blue Dog positions on health reform: The Blue Dog Coalition strongly supports health care reform that lowers costs for families and small businesses, increases choice and competition, and allows individuals to keep their doctor. We are concerned, however, about a “Medicare-like” public option and its ability to achieve all of the benefits put forth by its proponents. How a public option is constructed and allowed to compete are critically important to ensuring families have the ability to keep their current health coverage and continue to see the doctor of their choice. While the Blue Dog membership has not endorsed a public option, we feel that should a public option be included in comprehensive health reform, it should adhere to the following conditions at a minimum: • Adheres to the Free Market: Medicare payment rates, which include structural payment inequities involving lower reimbursement to rural areas, must not be used as the basis for reimbursement. Rather, rates must be negotiated between the plan and its providers as is the case currently for all health insurance plans. Available Only as a Fallback: The availability of a public option would occur only as a fallback and in the absence of adequate competition and cost containment. Fundamental insurance market reforms and increased choice through the Exchange should improve access and contribute to lower costs. However, should the private plans fail to meet specific availability and cost targets, a public option would be triggered and be allowed to compete on a level playing field subject to the conditions outlined above. General Description: The Blue Dog Coalition - who celebrated 15 years of leadership in 2009 - has built a reputation as a serious player in the policy arena, promoting positions which bridge the gap between ideological extremes. Many of the group's policy proposals have been praised as fair, responsible, and positive additions to a Congressional environment too often marked as partisan and antagonistic. The 51 conservative and moderate Democrats in the group hail from every region of the country, although the group acknowledges some southern ancestry which accounts for the group's nickname. Taken from the South's longtime description of a party loyalist as one who would vote for a yellow dog if it were on the ballot as a Democrat, the "Blue Dog" moniker was taken by members of The Coalition because their moderate-to-conservative-views had been "choked blue" by their party in the years leading up to the 1994 election.

*B*lue Dog Leadership Team*_ *__* Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (SD), Blue Dog Co-Chair for Administration Rep. Baron Hill (IN-09), Blue Dog Co-Chair for Policy Rep. Charlie Melancon (LA-03), Blue Dog Co-Chair for Communications Rep. Heath Shuler (NC-11), Blue Dog Whip

*_Blue Dog Members_* Altmire, Jason (PA-04) Arcuri, Mike (NY-24) Baca, Joe (CA-43) Barrow, John (GA-12) Berry, Marion (AR-01) Bishop, Sanford (GA-02) Boren, Dan (OK-02) Boswell, Leonard (IA-03) Boyd, Allen (FL-02) Bright, Bobby (AL-02) Cardoza, Dennis (CA-18) Carney, Christopher (PA-10) Chandler, Ben (KY-06) Childers, Travis (MS-01) Cooper, Jim (TN-05) Costa, Jim (CA-20) Cuellar, Henry (TX-28) Davis, Lincoln (TN-04) Donnelly, Joe (IN-02) Ellsworth, Brad (IN-08) Giffords, Gabrielle (AZ-08) Gordon, Bart (TN-06) Griffith, Parker (AL-05) Harman, Jane (CA-36) Herseth Sandlin, Stephanie (SD) Hill, Baron (IN-09) Holden, Tim (PA-17) Kratovil, Jr., Frank (MD-01) McIntyre, Mike (NC-07) Marshall, Jim (GA-03) Matheson, Jim (UT-02) Melancon, Charlie (LA-03) Michaud, Mike (ME-02) Minnick, Walt (ID-01) Mitchell, Harry (AZ-05) Moore, Dennis (KS-03) Murphy, Patrick (PA-08) Nye, Glenn (VA-02) Peterson, Collin (MN-07) Pomeroy, Earl (ND) Ross, Mike (AR-04) Salazar, John (CO-03) Sanchez, Loretta (CA-47) Schiff, Adam (CA-29) Scott, David (GA-13) Shuler, Heath (NC-11) Space, Zack (OH-18) Tanner, John (TN-08) Taylor, Gene (MS-04) Thompson, Mike (CA-01) Wilson, Charles (OH-06)

Health Care Leadership: *_Health Care_* /Mike Ross, Chairman/ /Marion Berry, Vice-Chairman/ /Zack Space, Vice-Chairman/ /Parker Griffith, Vice-Chairman/ / / Mike Thompson Jim Cooper Travis Childers David Scott Earl Pomeroy John Barrow Charlie Wilson John Tanner Collin Peterson Jim Matheson

1 comment:

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