…Obama — and former senator Tom Daschle, his point man on health care — want to provide a government-run option, modeled after Medicare, as a choice for people who don’t get insurance through their employers. This public plan — presumably to be offered at cost — would compete with commercial insurers to provide better service and benefits.
Such a plan is a compelling idea for the simple reason that it tests the notion that private health insurance plans operate more efficiently than government.
To its critics, however, the public plan would put private insurers at a disadvantage because, unlike the government, they have to earn a profit. What’s more, critics argue, it could lead to an unraveling of employer-provided plans. That, too, is an interesting argument because many conservatives are trying to do just that, by ending the tax deduction enjoyed by employer-based plans…
Read the whole article. It’s worth it.