Fox Host: Public Option Would Be Tax-Payer Funded Government Health Care Program

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You’ll be shocked to learn that Fox News is misinforming its viewers about the public option.

“The reason that the public option is so controversial is, it’s a government-run health option. So if you can’t get health care anywhere else, this is the idea, that you could get it from this government-offered plan, which of course would be paid for by the taxpayers.”In reality, the public option would be available, as one option among many other private options, to people shopping in the health insurance exchange. Any of those 30-or-so million consumers could buy into it. And with the exception of the fact that it will be a). not for profit, and b). accountable to the government (as opposed to to shareholders), the public option will have to behave exactly like a private insurance company–financed and stabilized by consumer premiums, without any subsidy from the federal government.

If something that has the support of 70 percent of the public can be considered controversial, it’s because a minority of elected officials have charged that it’s the seed for a single payer system. That’s about it, though.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at brian@talkingpointsmemo.com
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