08.17.09

Government-run Health Care Not an Option for Enzi

Washington, D.C. – A government-run option for health care is not an option for U.S.Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., a key figure in the health care debate.

Enzi, Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP)Committee and member of the Senate Finance Committee, repeated his opposition to agovernment-run health care plan today while addressing the Casper Rotary Club. Over theweekend, Health and Human Services Secretary Katherine Sebelius hinted that theAdministration may be willing to look beyond a government-run option.

“As I've said from the beginning, a government-run option is not an option. I votedagainst the Democrat plan in the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committeelast month and would do so again,” Enzi said. “A government-run plan would increase healthcare costs, lessen service and add to our huge debt. The American people are doing a greatjob of getting this message across to the Administration and Congress.”

Enzi said health care reform is urgently needed but a government takeover wouldmake the situation worse. Enzi pointed to the “10 Steps to Transform Health Care in America”bill he introduced in the last Congress, which can be viewed at www.enzi.senate.gov, andother ideas put forward by both Republicans and Democrats as possible ways to make healthcare in America better.

One concept being discussed in the Senate is a non-profit health insurancecooperative where consumers could band together to seek better rates and coverage fromhealth insurance companies.

Enzi said this approach, depending on how it is written, could be similar to his smallbusiness health care plans, a part of his 10 Steps.

“The co-op approach has potential and should be considered as long as it's nothijacked as a backdoor way to get a government-run program in place. I believe theAmerican people have made it clear that this is not something they want. It worries them andthey have rightly expressed their concerns,” Enzi said.

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