JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

The health care summit …

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… was probably a waste. But I’m starting to love my president again. Here’s a prime reason why (from today’s NYT):

One of the sharpest areas of philosophical disagreement between Mr. Obama and the Republicans emerged when Senator John Barrasso, the Wyoming Republican who is also an orthopedic surgeon, contended that Americans would make better, less costly health care choices if they had catastrophic insurance coverage that required them to pay for most services out of pocket.

Mr. Obama asked if he would prefer that members of Congress have only catastrophic coverage; the senator said he would. “That’s right, because members of Congress make $176,000 a year,” Mr. Obama replied, adding that he wondered whether Mr. Barrasso would feel the same way if he earned only $40,000.

I mean, what sums up the out-of-touch Republican approach to health care reform better than Barrasso’s words? Yes, all Americans should only have catastrophic insurance, and that way they’ll just pay for the rest out of pocket. Out of empty pocket.

Pathetic.

I pay taxes. Lots of taxes. I don’t love doing so. But if you tell me I need to pay more taxes to make certain millions of Americans are covered, I’ll do it without hesitation. The question is: Will you?