Rockefeller Says No To Baucus Health Bill

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.


The public option has had a rough couple weeks. But as President Obama talks about “compromise,” conservative Democrats waver, and Republicans continue to express their adamant opposition, Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va), a key member of the Senate Finance Committee, is standing firm. Rockefeller will not vote for the health insurance reform legislation proposed by finance committee chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.), which does not include a public option, Rockefeller told reporters on a Tuesday afternoon conference call.

Baucus’s bill proposes health insurance cooperatives; between four and seven such co-ops exist in the US today, depending on how the term is defined. But Rockefeller doesn’t think co-ops are enough. He believes the government has the needed experience in providing insurance and has the ability to act as a much-needed competitive force in the insurance market, bringing down costs. “The public option is there as a benchmark that is a discipline for competition,” he said.

Rockefeller said he hopes the public option will gain more support as a final vote on health care reform draws near. He suggested that other Democrats on the finance committee shared his concerns with the Baucus bill. It’s hard to imagine any reform bill getting through the finance committee without the support of Rockefeller and other more liberal committee members.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate