Feb 5, 2007

John Edwards Leads on Universal Health

Following on from his powerful speech on Friday, and his hints on the subject yesterday on Meet the Press, John Edwards has today launched his policy for Universal Health Care.

The plan by Edwards will cost billions extra each year will be paid for by such measures as taking away the Bush Tax cuts for household who earn over $200,000, the collection of now unpaid capital gains taxes and through streamlining and providing a more efficient health service.

Over 47 million Americans do not currently have any health insurance. The Edwards plan will help low income families get insurance by providing them with tax credits or subsidies. He will also expand Medicare and establish a Federal Health Insurance Agency.

It is a bold plan, and Edwards is certainly leading on this issue. On Friday, he told delegates at the DNC Winter Meeting that it was time to stop talking about "access" to health care, and time to provide Universal Health Care.

Edwards' plan contains the following:
  • Require businesses and other employers to either cover their employees or help finance their health insurance.
  • Make insurance affordable by creating new tax credits, expanding Medicaid and SCHIP, reforming insurance laws, and taking innovative steps to contain health care costs.
  • Create regional Health Markets purchasing pools to ensure that every single American has a way to purchase an affordable, high-quality health plan, increase choices among insurance plans, and cut costs for businesses offering insurance.
  • Once these steps have been taken, require all American residents to get insurance.