Next Stab at Health Reform Looks More Promising

Industry claims to be ready to compromise
By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Nov 20, 2008 9:33 AM CST
Republican Sen. Charles Grassley met with Democrats Edward Kennedy and Max Baucus yesterday to discuss plans to seek comprehensive health care reform.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – If health care reform passes this time, a major factor will be that its erstwhile enemies are now rooting for it, the Wall Street Journal reports. An industry roadblock killed the Clinton administration’s attempt in the early 1990s, but this time, insurers are playing ball. “You see a range of diverse stakeholders trying to work together to achieve health care reform,” says a trade-group rep.

Though veteran legislators say they see more cooperation this time around, that is no guarantee of success. It’s easy for insurers and doctors to look good now by sounding supportive. “Talk is cheap on the front end of this thing,” says one health care consultant. “The rubber hits the road when that 1,000-page document comes out with specifics.” (Read more health care stories.)