Health-care plan presents problems

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • Keith Holcomb
    Sept. 28, 2009 6:40 p.m.

    What best serves the American people? The Republican view is to criticize and berate the Obama administration. And Hatch talks about the Administration offering a bipartison package. It is not possible! The Republican would not recognize a good idea if they saw one.

  • My View
    Sept. 26, 2009 12:54 a.m.

    Orrin can present problems. Not solutions.

  • Chris Laurence
    Sept. 25, 2009 7:37 p.m.

    Thank you, Senator Hatch. I would like health care reform also, but I would like it done right.

  • K2
    Sept. 25, 2009 7:13 p.m.

    Where do these health-care lobbyists get their money (to bribe our elected representatives). Pretty obvious isn't it; and I have heard that these same lobbyists dole out something on the order of a million dollars a day to our federal congressmen and congresswomen.
    Senator Hatch, I suggest you have an heart-to-heart talk with Senator Harkin of Iowa such that he can bring you up to speed in what is going on and needs to be done.

  • Better healthcare
    Sept. 25, 2009 3:48 p.m.

    Americans bear the brunt of the most medical errors, according to a survey covering the USA, Australia, Canada, Germany, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Almost 7,000 patients were consulted.

    The survey supported by The Commonwealth Fund finds that one-third of U.S. patients with health problems reported experiencing medical mistakes, medication errors, or inaccurate or delayed lab results -- the highest rate of any of the six nations surveyed

  • Dr. Deep Pockets
    Sept. 25, 2009 3:47 p.m.

    Hatch has received more money from the pharmaceutical industry than any other group, raking in $1.25 million since 1998. He obviously has the peoples best interest in mind.

    Take away the bribery and FREE health care from these (self) representatives
    to help them think. Not to mention these old men aren't going to be around
    in 10-20 years. So 50% of your children's income going into insurance for profit on wall street won't effect them anyway.

    Right now we pay the most for 37th place in the world for health care.
    Gotta be proud

  • Anonymous
    Sept. 25, 2009 3:32 p.m.

    A recent Harvard study showed that 25% of legitimate (ie the Dr. was at fault) malpractice claims are found in favor of the Dr. and the plaintiff didn't receive any compensation. Likewise, in 25% of cases where the Dr. was not at fault, plaintiffs prevailed (yet received smaller compensation.) Overall, the legal system tended to favor Drs.

    Tort reform isn't going to make a significant difference. One problem is the way Drs. are compensated. Rather than being paid a salary, Drs. are paid for services--which results in an incentive for more services.

  • RedShirt
    Sept. 25, 2009 3:21 p.m.

    To "to Mike Richards | 2:54 p.m." um...I think that you may need to go visit those happy people with that nice white coat that lets you hug yourself.

    Mike Richards has not identified himself on any post. If you look at the posts here today, and compare them with Mike's normal writing style, they are different. Even between the posts that you attribute to him there is a difference from post to post.

    Maybe the "Mike | 11:26 a.m." was him, but I doubt that.

    I was supprised to see that I was not called Mike Richards again.

    But the big question is, why does it matter if he is wrote all of those? If he is that lonely or has issues where he feels compelled to write to himself under different names, doesn't he deserve pitty?

    Why are you attacking somebody, I thought you were a bleeding heart liberal that cannot stand by while somebody suffers? Where is the compassion that claim liberals are full of?

  • @to Mike Richards.
    Sept. 25, 2009 3:21 p.m.

    hey, I wrote HSA 10:38. The phantom poster.

  • to Mike Richards
    Sept. 25, 2009 2:54 p.m.

    Again, more ramblings and self-congradulatory comments form yourself to yourself.

    The medical term for that is "Schizophrenia"

    On this thread ALONE - you've written:

    Richard | 12:54 a.m.
    Wouldn't it be nice? | 1:02 a.m.
    To Hatch Bashers | 7:54 a.m.
    Baby steps | 8:26 a.m.
    @ anon 8:07 | 8:54 a.m.
    @ anon 8:07 | 8:54 a.m.
    @ cry babies 9:14 | 10:01 a.m.
    HSA | 10:38 a.m.

    And my all time favorite-of-the-day: (written to yourself)

    @Mike Richards | 1:26 p.m. Sept. 25, 2009
    You present some good ideas.

    HaHaHA --- keep it up buddy, you're a hoot!

  • @Anon 12:36
    Sept. 25, 2009 2:52 p.m.


  • @Mike Richards
    Sept. 25, 2009 1:26 p.m.

    You presebt some good ideas.

    It is very frustrating to have to fight for the basic concept of a free system that the government keeps out of, except in writing and implementation of a few basic rules of conduct.

    Democrats are right in their assertions that past administrations have not done anything to solve the problems. Republicans are right in saying that a government system is basically unfree and un-American.

    My greatest wish would be that it should be agreed that health care should remain private and then that there be a free, open and bi-partisan discussion to establish the guidlines of fair practice.

    The ideas you cite are not new but just need to be embodied in good and understandable laws and carried out. Doctors free from frivolous law suits and exaggerated awards for 'damages' with the public able to seek fair redress for incompetence, overcharging and malpractice. The publishing of prices, broken down, and the requirement that medical practitioners be up front and public about charges for tests, doctor visits, an end to going half-or totally-blind into the doctor's surgery.

  • Anon
    Sept. 25, 2009 12:36 p.m.

    RE: Cry Babies | 11:44 a.m. Sept. 25, 2009

    So get wealthy and healthy. This is America a land that has proven time and again that people can start from nothing and get wealthy and being healthy is attainable too. Somehow there is a paradigm that says that it is immoral to be rich that being middle class is where the "good" citizens are. Guess what that paradigm is false. I've never wanted to be middle in anything. I wanted to excel in sports, in school and I want to excel in life. If there is a higher quality of life whether it physically, financially, socially or spiritually I will seek that path. As the saying goes "If great is available good is not enough." There is no reason anyone cannot have the health and wealth they want in this country.

  • RedShirt
    Sept. 25, 2009 12:23 p.m.

    To "bluecollar | 11:39 a.m." it's true, the Democrats are pushing a plan that few people want. According to Gallup, only 37% of people in the US support the plans that have been put out there by the Democrats.

    What that means is that there is 63% that do not support it, and of those 39% are adamently against it.

    So, your arguement against HSAs is based on people not researching the cost of their medications. So, your solution to people not making the best decision is to remove that freedom from those people?

    You also seem to have glossed over the fact that 1/3 of HSAs were picked up by people who were uninsured. Doesn't that mean that there is something right about it? Since it is cheaper than standard insurance, would that make it a good alternative for young, healthy people to invest in so that when they are older they have the medical funds they need?

    You say that "HSA's are for the wealthy and healthy" but Medicare/Medicaid/SCHIP/HIPUtah are for the poor and sick. So far, the two extreams are covered. Now what do you have to say?

  • Cry Babies
    Sept. 25, 2009 11:44 a.m.

    In testimony before the U.S. Senate Finance Committee's Subcommittee on Health in 2006, Commonwealth Fund Assistant Vice President Sara R. Collins, Ph.D., said that all evidence to date shows that health savings accounts and high-deductible health plans worsen, rather than improve, the U.S. health system's problems.

    In 2006, a Government Accountability Office report concluded: "HSA-eligible plan enrollees who participated in GAO's focus groups generally reported positive experiences, but most would not recommend the plans to all consumers. Few participants reported researching cost before obtaining health care services, although many researched the cost of prescription drugs. Most participants were satisfied with their HSA-eligible plans and would recommend them to healthy consumers, but not to those who use maintenance medication, have a chronic condition, have children, or may not have the funds to meet the high deductible."
    Bottom line: HSA's are for the wealthy and healthy.

  • bluecollar
    Sept. 25, 2009 11:39 a.m.

    if you're really, really rich, vote for republicans. they'll keep your taxes low.

    middle and lower-income citizens now paying for health insurance would see a savings under the baucus plan and would not be declined insurance coverage because of pre-existing conditions.

    low income citizens who cannot afford insurance will have medical treatment available to them, many for the first time ever without utilizing expensive emergency rooms that we all pay for in increased hospital costs.

    echo lew jeppson's statement: during many years of a working majority, the gop failed to facilitate health care reform. the gop failed.
    to now imply that "liberal commies" won't engage in bipartisan rform that "everyone wants" is disengenuous.
    take a hike, hatch.

  • @854am
    Sept. 25, 2009 11:30 a.m.

    I'm glad you stepped in to debunk the comparison between health insurance and auto insurance.

    As you suggest auto insurance has to do with protecting the good driver largely against other motorists. If I have an accident and someone else is at fault the other motorist's insurance, not mine, pays.
    If I have an accident and I am at fault then my insurance pays, my premiums go up markedly or I may become uninsurable. I may be banned from driving, fined or even be sent to jail.

    In health insurance most of the claims have nothing to do with accidents but largely with the results of my own actions or inaction.

    There are similarities but very significant dissimilarities so arguments for mandatory health insurance cannot be made on the same basis.

  • Anonymous
    Sept. 25, 2009 11:29 a.m.

    I for one appreciate the stance Senator Hatch has taken on this issue. We are headed down the wrong road at an astonishing rate. Government take-over of health care will be a nail in the coffin of the freedoms we have enjoyed as Americans since the beginning of our country. Reform is needed, yes, but NOT a complete government take-over, especially not in the form currently presented. And yes, I DO think things could be worse, much worse, than they are currently.

  • Mike
    Sept. 25, 2009 11:26 a.m.

    Based on some of the numbers I have seen floating around, the average cost for these bills to cover one uninsured person is just under $30,000 per year! That's a very poor way to spend money when private insurance companies can do it for much less. So tell me, how is spending twice as much going to improve health care?! Let's stop focusing on symptoms and start identifying and addressing problems!

    * Execute real Tort reform to reduce doctor overhead
    * With reduced liability risk, doctors can practice real medicine, not 'defensive' medicine, thus reducing unnecessary test and expenses
    * Continue to encourage personal responsibility through promotion of HSAs and other high-deductible options
    * Remove 'business' mandates and let the markets operate
    * Then focus on safety nets for exceptions and extreme circumstances

    One size fits all is not the answer, and the Government is not qualified to run a large-scale healthcare organization!

  • @Rob
    Sept. 25, 2009 11:14 a.m.

    Because it really isn't affordable. Do a little traveling. Want to live in some nasty pied a'terre?

  • Red
    Sept. 25, 2009 11:09 a.m.

    ToHatchBashers7:54-"I hear no one disputing the facts that Sen. Hatch put forth...."

    Well, some of his "facts" sound pretty badly "spun" to me.

    Limit on Health Savings Accounts? Please!

    Each company sets its own limit on these now. I've worked where the limit has been $0, $1500, $3000, and $5000. At worst, we'd have a uniform Federal limit instead of the present patchwork. this would probably benefit the majority of taxpayers since, as far as I know, most companies don't have HSAs.

    Doctor's note for dual use items? Please!

    That's current policy now.

    55% federal tax on a bottle of aspirin?

    Please! Marginal tax rate on taxable income of $250K is 33%. Calling the difference between before-tax and after-tax cost a "federal tax" is intellectually dishonest, but in the worst case it couldn't be 55%.

    THB:-"First item on the agenda is drive a stake through the heart of the dem proposal."

    There isn't a "dem proposal." There are drafts to be marked up and combined into a bill that will only be a "dem proposal" if the Republics play scorched-earth.

  • Dimitri Oppuhopper
    Sept. 25, 2009 10:39 a.m.

    I have the perfect Heath Care reform that if followed will lower health care costs drastically. Exercise 1 hr 5X a week, eat quality whole foods, get enough rest, don't use tobacco and don't drink alcohol (if you choose to do it in moderation). Don't have sexual relations with anyone other than the person you are married to. Man, if everyone did this there would be less heart disease, cancers, STD's, abortions and many other health problems (I do realize there will be some diseases and accident but on a whole health care costs would be greatly reduced.) Am I the only one who thinks this debate is just fixing the problem with a bandaid when we should be focusing on the cause. It is said that we are an unhealthy nation, well we can fix it. As our beloved President Obama said: "Yes WE Can!"

  • HSA
    Sept. 25, 2009 10:38 a.m.

    @crybabies: What is your problem with HSA accounts? The individual pays their own way and is benefited by having a lower premium on their major medical account. "Help Save the Affluent?" What a crock, this program is good for any family. In the end, they are in charge of their health care. Is that what you resent so much? People having freedom. Many on these posts remind me of the Mao worshippers of China. Class envy. Chop down the tall poppies, make the society homogeneous. Why not just kill the ones with a higher IQ and a better genetic lottery ticket? That is really what is the burr under your blanket.

  • Independent doctor
    Sept. 25, 2009 10:36 a.m.

    It is far better to not change anything than to impose socialized medicine on us as proposed by the obama/democrat machine in Washington who exempt themselves from such "health care."

  • Rob
    Sept. 25, 2009 10:29 a.m.

    Many other countries can deliver quality affordable healthcare to all its people. Why can't we?

  • Brother Chuck Schroeder
    Sept. 25, 2009 10:23 a.m.

    Yes, it's true, tis the season for cost of living raises and raises in Congress, so Hatch and anyone else there will tell you anything, to cover up this fact, and let you rant on about other thing's like this. It's a fact. And with the majority in the House of GOP it starts here. House passed the measure by a 217-190 vote. It would keep the government running for another month and also patches over problems in the financially struggling Postal Service and funds soon-to-expire highway programs for another month as well. You elected then and have no one to blame but yourselves, yet it appears you still learned nothing. It's time to wake up. They have YOU controlled, even on this smoke screen healthcare thing. It's called "Mind Control". Has not Glenn Beck ever told you this also?.

  • wallofvoodoo
    Sept. 25, 2009 10:23 a.m.

    Well Orin, you're so smart, you come up with a healthcare (or any bill) that actually benefits the middle class. Hasn't happened in a long time & won't in the near future.

    I agree that OTC should be able to be used out of the HSA. Better idea would be to move the medical expenses to a for AGI deduction with no floor with OTC deductable. Won't happen because the HSA benefits the wealthy & the current med deduction doesn't hurt them. Why do I care about the limits, I can't afford a plan that allows a HSA anyway, & I couldn't contribute anyway. If the government thinks this is a solution, they should throw some money in the Kitty to get things started.

    Get rid of the mandates that don't make sense. If it is mandated that they offer it, make it an option for each individual plan that is paid for by the individual. Great idea RedShirt.

    Big savings for Meidcare/Medicaid/Congress Healthplans - do away with paying for Viagra. Stupid things like that are costing the taxpayers too much money for something not nescessary.

  • RedShirt
    Sept. 25, 2009 10:06 a.m.

    To "Cry babies | 9:14 a.m." you are very wrong about the Health Savings Accounts. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, in their report "The Uninsured and the Health Care Safety Net" 1/3 of the HSAs are purchased by people that were previously uninsured.

    If tort reform is so bad, why is it that, according to Emergency Physicians Monthly, doctors are leaving states that have high malpractice insurance rates? Why are some states closing their ERs or else having a hard time getting specialists? Those doctors are reporting that they cannot afford the insurance, and are moving to places where the insurance is cheaper, thus reducing costs further in areas where there are more doctors.

    Lets think about it, if a OB/GYN has to pay $300,000/year for insurance alone, don't you think it would cost less to deliver a baby if that amount was cut in half?

    To address buying insurance across state lines, proposals have been made to standardize insurance forms to significantly reduce the paperwork. The other option is for a doctor to contract with a processing center to take care of paperwork.

  • @ cry babies 9:14
    Sept. 25, 2009 10:01 a.m.

    Your tone says you're the one crying. You covet the affluence of successful, industrious people and you criticize tort reform without doing any real research - quoting one article headline doesn't count.
    Take a look at the Perryman Group Report that says the following about Texas tort reform:

    1. In August 2004, the Texas Hospital Association reported a 70% reduction in the number of lawsuits filed against the state’s hospitals.
    2. Medical liability insurance rates declined. Many doctors saw average rate reductions of over 21%, with some doctors seeing almost 50% decreases. (Recent information provided to The Perryman Group during the course of this study suggests that premiums are declining even further in 2008.)
    3. Beginning in 2003, physicians started returning to Texas. The Texas Medical Board reports licensing 10,878 new physicians since 2003, up from 8,391 in the prior four years. Perryman has determined that at least 1,887 of those physicians are specifically the result of lawsuit reform.
    4. In May 2006, the AMA removed Texas from its list of states experiencing a liability crisis, marking the first time it has removed any state from the list.

  • radical causes
    Sept. 25, 2009 9:54 a.m.

    The radical (root) cause of poor health is not only our stupidly unhealthy lifestyles, though that is the main problem, but also the impositions of the medical profession upon the public.

    No health care plan is needed so much as reform of the medical profession itself.

    Why is it that that profession is willing to perform life-threatening operations such as cutting out part of the stomach or stapling the stomach of an obese person, but is not willing to perform the relatively safe and cheap operation of inserting a balloon into the stomach of the obese patient. This does essentially the same thing and it's an operation you can get outside of the USA but the American surgeon won't do it.

    Private medecine, good private medicine, is cheaper and often more intelligent outside the USA. Some of the best research and development comes out of foreign nations first. For example notice how many times new discoveries are pubicised in 'The Lancet" the British medical journal, rather than JAMA.

  • Potpourri
    Sept. 25, 2009 9:44 a.m.

    I agree with the premise that there should be no changes that increase the burden on the taxpayer.
    I think that anyone in government that voted for any bailout whatsoever of the banks or the auto industry should be canned by the electorate.

    Some very good points. I don't think that throwing public money on curing diseases is so helpful, however, as simply stressing and re-stressing that most of our ills have to do with intemperance in eating, drinking, inhaling and sniffing, over-exercising and under-exercising and the like.

  • @cry babies
    Sept. 25, 2009 9:40 a.m.

    You are stuck in the paradigm that the two parties are different. Take a good, close look at the two political parties and you will see that they are identical. Its all about votes and power and corruption. (think bigger centralized government). The exact opposite of what the inspired fouders had in mind.

  • @ 8:54
    Sept. 25, 2009 9:39 a.m.

    I would argue that health insurance is a lot like auto insurance. An uninsured friend of mine was recently told that if he didn't have by-pass surgery, he would die. Even though he couldn't pay for it, they did the surgery anyway. Those costs were passed onto the rest of us.

    Just as uninsured drivers cause our uninsured motorist premiums to go up, people without health insurance cause our healthcare costs to go up because the cost of their care is passed on to us.

  • Cry babies
    Sept. 25, 2009 9:14 a.m.

    The Republican "plan" consists of:
    Health Savings Accounts (think: Help Save the Affluent)
    Buying health insurance across state lines (think: more complexity/paperwork for already burdened Drs. and mergers/consolidation of companies is the rule not the exception).
    Tort Reform (think: 33 states already have tort reform and studies done by researchers at Princeton and Johns Hopkins School of Public Health show malpractice suits do not play a significant role in healthcare costs).

    Republicans aren't going to vote for any plan they haven't controlled. The party of authoritarian followers can't get used to the fact that they lost the last 2 elections. They've no one to blame but themselves, yet it appears they've learned nothing.

  • @ redshirt 8:55 am
    Sept. 25, 2009 9:09 a.m.

    You are right. The program in MA is a mess but to be fair, Romney's replacement is responsible for much of the current disaster. With a very liberal state congress, Romney had the choice of either getting involved in writing the HC plan or letting the MA congress make a complete mess of the system. He chose to try and influence it by including some modicum of personal responsibility. I suggest that if he were still Governor, it wouldn't be quite the mess as it is now.

  • RedShirt
    Sept. 25, 2009 8:55 a.m.

    To "Anonymous | 8:07 a.m." who are listening to? According to Rassmussen Reports, only 26% of the people in Massachusetts consider it successful. Since its implementation, ER visits have increased by 7%.

    If what Romney did was so good, why did the Boston Globe report "Bay State health insurance premiums highest in country" In that article, they said "The increase [in Massachusetts premiums] is attributed to an increase in charges by physicians and hospitals" So apparently what Romney did was counterproductive.

  • @ anon 8:07
    Sept. 25, 2009 8:54 a.m.

    Health insurance does not equal auto insurance. Auto insurance is needed to cover injuries or damage inflicted on another through the use of their vehicle. Health insurance covers the insured only - one person's policy includes no reparations to another who may catch their cold or illness. You cannot equate them as President Obama attempted to do. Take a serious look at the suggestions @ baby steps - I think there may be common ground to work with there.

  • Baby steps
    Sept. 25, 2009 8:26 a.m.

    Why not pass a series of small bills that change HC one step at a time?
    Step 1) Tort reform. We know it works - look at Missouri and TX.
    Step 2) Make catastrophic HC insurance the default.
    Step 3) Allow competition for plans over state lines.
    Step 4) Improve health savings plans.
    And so forth.

    @ Anonymous
    Get off the couch and do something that contributes to society. Your "I hate the rich", "I want something for nothing", "I'm lazy and on welfare so give me your money" attitude tells me everything I need to know about you. You actually covet that which isn't yours. Wow! Talk about corrupt!

  • Anonymous
    Sept. 25, 2009 8:07 a.m.

    Hatch says, “The so-called individual mandate requires everyone to obtain health-care coverage or pay an extra tax. If you don't, and you are making, say, $66,000, the tax is $1,900 per year. Some may say this is simply a penalty for not doing what Uncle Sam wants you to do, but let's face it – it's nothing more than a new tax.”

    Ironically, that is EXACTLY what Mitt Romney championed in Massachusetts, which turned out to be one of the most successful state-level healthcare reforms in the U.S. Romney was in favor of this approach because it promotes fairness and lowers costs. Because of this mandate, more people have insurance, so fewer people show up at hospitals who can’t pay. This results in the hospitals lowering prices, because the responsible people with health insurance no longer have to subsidize those without it.

    The individual mandate for health insurance is based on the same principle as the individual mandate that drivers have auto insurance. It lowers the cost responsible people play because they stop subsidizing the irresponsible. Criticizing this Republican, free-market idea as "nothing more than a new tax" is disingenous.

  • RedShirt
    Sept. 25, 2009 8:05 a.m.

    Hatch was correct in saying that Obama is just making things more expensive.

    On Wednesday, there was the article "Governors oppose $40B medical-device tax" It layed out how the Federal Government is going to tax medical device companies at a higher rate. So, if medical devices now cost more, who pays for it?

    Next, Congress wants to mandate coverage for Pre-Existing conditions they also want to remove the possibility of a company rejecting somebody. Both of these will also increase premiums. Pre-existing condition mandated coverage will add 20% to 40% to a policy.

    Lets begin to lower costs by eliminating many of the unnecessary state mandated insurance benefits. Currently 25% of the uninsured cannot afford insurance because of state mandated benefits.

    Focus on solutions that work. The free market has made health insurace more affordable with the creation of the HSAs. 1/3 of HSA holders previously did not have insurance.

  • Lew Jeppson
    Sept. 25, 2009 8:01 a.m.

    Moreover, senator, the Baucus proposal is a crazy quilt because your party won't do the sensible thing - single payer.

  • @anon
    Sept. 25, 2009 7:54 a.m.

    Your true colors are scary. Division and opposition is all your about, class envy is the worst political game in town and you have been duped right into the middle of it.

  • Grover
    Sept. 25, 2009 7:54 a.m.

    With wet finger clearly in the air to judge the political winds, Sen. Hatch has calculated that saying "everyone is for reform, but this isn't it" gets him off the hook without needing to support anything (and risk angering his base). If the debate goes on for about another month, the pro change forces will get a huge boost in the form of "annual enrollment" for employer based health plans. For at least the last ten years, enrollment has meant substantial increases in premiums, lower benefits or higher copays, or both. Those sitting on their hands cannot seem to grasp the concept that the status quo is unsustainable and change will happen whether or not they help shape it.

  • To Hatch Bashers
    Sept. 25, 2009 7:54 a.m.

    I take it that you all LIKE what is being proposed? Do you really WANT that? I hear no one disputing the facts that Sen. Hatch put forth, so I assume you are in favor of the increased taxes and believe that they will be worth it. In my mind the dems are not going to stop pushing the abomination that they are working on until it has been killed. First item on the agenda is drive a stake through the heart of the dem proposal. Then maybe we can have a real discussion. As it is there are no rep proposals that see the light of day either in Congress or the state run media.

  • rw
    Sept. 25, 2009 7:53 a.m.

    If you are trying to empty a bathtub, you can pull the plug, you can bail and bail, but the first thing you should probably do is turn off the faucet. Most of our medical expenses are the results of a few common diseases that might be cured with enough focus and energy put on them. If we doubled, tripled, our investment and emphasis on curing these diseases, did whatever it took, the investment would pay off handsomely. Medical costs would go down, suffering would go down, productivity would go up. In my opinion, any health plan should focus first on prevention, second on cure, third on treatment. Pull the plug. Stop the diseases. (Yes, I know, easier said than done, but worth trying.)

  • Lew Jeppson
    Sept. 25, 2009 7:52 a.m.

    Senator Hatch, The fact that during the eight years your party held the presidency you did nothing to make health care affordable to middle Americans leads me to believe that your party really doesn't care about our predicament.

  • re: anonymous 1:03 a.m.
    Sept. 25, 2009 7:15 a.m.

    You have a more Corrupt View.

    Thinking rich = greed.

    Thinking taxation will make rich people less greedy.

    Thinking that taking other's money because they have more is not greed.

  • Darin
    Sept. 25, 2009 5:55 a.m.

    Sen. Hatch,

    With all due respect, I believe you stopped participating in the Senate negotiations because you are part of the establishment, and you have no real interest in changing anything. You talk about a new tax burden on the middle class, but even if this is true, doesn't this "burden" pale in comparison to the much larger problem of the millions of uninsured and the unfathomable runaway costs of health care in America today? You don't think the current system already punishes the middle class? Shame on you for ceasing "to participate" in reform. Get off your cushion and do something about the problems everyone agrees on - runaway costs, to name one.

  • Timj
    Sept. 25, 2009 4:12 a.m.

    Orrin, what type of reform would you support? Have you ever supported any type of serious healthcare reform? How much do insurance companies pay you/bribe you/donate to your campaign?

  • Dustin
    Sept. 25, 2009 1:14 a.m.

    OK Senator Hatch, you continue to bash Obama's health care reform plan, and I'm not saying I am 100% for it, but you have yet to state what your plan for healthcare reform would be. You say it is necessary, but you haven't given us specifics about how to reform it. All I hear from Republicans(and I am a Republican) is how to "tweak" the current system. Healthcare needs a major reform in this country.

    So whining Republican congressman, what is your plan for reform. Like I said, I don't agree 100% with Obama's plan, but it has got to be better than what we have now. The World Health Organization has ranked us #39 globally in overall health care by country, right in between Costa Rica and Slovenia. Costa Rica and Slovenia? That is pathetic! And we spend more per capita on healthcare than any other country. I'm not for socialized medicine, but a major overhaul in the healthcare system is needed? So tell me your ideas please!!! I am open ears!

  • Anonymous
    Sept. 25, 2009 1:03 a.m.

    Corrupt View.

    Middle class Americans do not make $250,000 a year.

    We are not Joe the Plumber who is making $250,000 a year.


    Those making over $250,000 a year did not want to give back to the middle class and the poor in the form of a tax on the rich that Obama recommended!

    The Greedy Rich who do not thing of others except their own portfolios.

  • Wouldn't it be nice?
    Sept. 25, 2009 1:02 a.m.

    It would be wonderful if everyone had affordable, quality health care coverage. Unfortunately, the long term financial consequences of a government run system will eventually lead to a much, much larger problem.

  • Richard
    Sept. 25, 2009 12:54 a.m.

    Thank you, Senator Hatch. I watched CSPAN coverage of the committee today, and was disappointed (to say the least) that Republicans are actually criticized for having targeted ideas that are not 1000 pages long. I would think such an array of ideas would make bi-partisan negotiations easier, and would be applauded.

    I have always used health care sparingly, and had only catastrophic coverage until a couple of years ago. The more I see in the current debate, the more I think the government opposes that approach. I could not imagine graduating from college in a time where such expensive insurance is required by the government and actually being able to pay off student loans. I suppose I should be grateful that the country I grew up in allowed me to spend so little for barebones insurance when I first struck out on my own, but instead I am sad that future generations will have such a hard time making ends meet. Future generations of Americans should have a better life than I did.