Stuart Butler: “We made a mistake”

Conservatives originated the idea of an individual health insurance mandate and promoted it at the American Enterprise Institute and the Heritage Foundation.  Today, they are running from the idea, however:

Intellectual authors of the idea at the Heritage Foundation have filed legal briefs contesting the mandate and have published mea culpas…. There is at least one remaining conservative defender: the man who helped start it all, Mark Pauly. He is no fan of the other provisions in 2010 health-care law. Still, he said, when it comes to the mandate, “personally, I think it’s wise public policy.”

Source: N.C. Aizenman in The Washington Post, worth reading.

Comments (6)

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  1. Brian Williams. says:

    Do we want to give the Government power to compel us to do what’s good for us?

  2. Joe Barnett says:

    What irony if President Obama was elected because he opposed a mandate — and loses now because he supports a mandate.

    “Over successive debates and primary battles, Obama hammered the issue as a key difference between himself and Clinton.

    “What’s she not telling you about her health-care plan?” said an advertisement for Obama. “It forces everyone to buy insurance, even if you can’t afford it, and you pay a penalty if you don’t.”

  3. Ken says:

    To Butler’s comment: Amen.

  4. Buster says:

    The mistake was championing the idea of an individual mandate rather than proof of financial responsibility. A limited benefit plan or an HSA would satisfy a requirement of proof of financial responsibility. However, an individual mandate requires a bureaucracy to decide what the mandate should include. The liberal party in Congress wanted the mandate to produce huge cross-subsidies with all manner of mandated benefits.

  5. John R. Graham says:

    Buster, for a government that funds over half of childbirths through Medicaid (now the largest comnponent of state budgets, and with a bigger federal bailout than K-12 education); and fibs to us continuously about the unfunded liability of Medicare and Social Security, to bloviate about imposing financial responsibility on the citizenry is pretty shameless.

    “Proof of financial responsibility” is code for a tax hike!

  6. Brian says:

    Well, if there has to be one defender left, might as well be the author.