Here’s a little noticed moment from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s press conference earlier today.
“[T]his, as I say, is the legislative process. And right now, we will have a public option in our bill,” Pelosi said.
But I said it before and I’ll say it again: The health insurance industry, which is out there fighting the public option tooth and nail because it does increase competition, which they don’t want. They’d be better getting a public option now than one that is triggered because if you have a triggered public option, it’s because the insurance industry has demonstrated that they’re not cooperating, they’re not doing the right thing, and I think they’ll have a tougher public option to deal with.
It would be premature to say that this is the deal being hashed out behind the scenes right now. But this seems like a clear warning from Pelosi to insurers–and also a signal to public option skeptics within her own party–that if the House backs a plan to “trigger” the public option, it will only do so if the triggers are affixed to a stronger, more robust public plan. That’s a bit of a tell, I’d say.