Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Unions Will Oppose Baucus Bill Unless It's Changed

About 30 unions will run a full-page ad in newspapers Wednesday announcing their opposition to the Senate Finance Committee's health overhaul bill, a top labor lobbyist said, according to AP.

The ad will state that unions will oppose the measure on the Senate floor unless "improvements" are made, according to Chuck Loveless, legislative director of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

The ad will state, "Real health care reform and nothing less," Loveless said.

Labor has been a major Democratic ally in the health care debate but is unhappy the legislation lacks a publicly run insurance plan and would tax expensive policies in an effort to drive down costs. Officials also want it to prevent insurance companies from refusing to cover some people and to force employers to cover their workers.

Besides AFSCME, sponsors of the ad include the AFL-CIO and the Communications Workers of America. The ad will run in The Washington Post, USA Today and Capitol Hill newspapers, AP reports.

The unions appear to want a "public option" in the expectation that the "public option" will eventually lead to federal government healthcare providers working under the public option, and as government employees they would also become union members.


  1. Is this just a head fake by the unions? The Baucus Bill requires everyone to buy health insurance and I understand it will provide government funding for co-ops to provide insurance in competition with existing companies. Sounds like a public option to me.

    On the other hand maybe the taxes on high-end policies has the unions worried about having to pay taxes on their current high-end policies.

    What a mess!

  2. Robert, you won't believe what got added to the Baucus bill, $1 billion in tax credits for new investments in therapies that prevent, diagnose, and treat acute and chronic diseases. It can come via direct loans from the U.S. Treasury. (page 258 of the amended act)

    The PEU boys must be happy. Max Baucus corporafornicates with the best of them.