Senate Dem Unveils Broad Health Reform

Baucus proposal would guarantee insurance for all citizens
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 12, 2008 7:21 AM CST
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont. Baucus will introduce a major health care proposal today.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
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(Newser) – Barack Obama made health care reform a key plank of his campaign, but even before he's been inaugurated Congressional Democrats are introducing legislation to transform the system. Leading the charge is Max Baucus, the Montana senator who leads the finance committee. His plan, which he'll introduce today, guarantees health insurance for all citizens—by expanding Medicaid and Medicare, easing purchases of private insurance, and changing rules for employers.

"Americans cannot wait any longer," said Baucus, whose 35,000-word proposal goes further than what Obama proposed during the campaign; the president-elect said that only children would be required to have coverage. Obama's aides told the New York Times that they welcomed the Congressional initiative at a moment when his own priorities are the economy and energy independence.