The Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday rejected a proposal to include a new government-run insurance plan in its health-care legislation, but debate over a proposed public plan isn’t expected to end at the committee.
By a 15-8 vote, the committee rejected an amendment sponsored by Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D., W.Va.), that would create a public health-insurance option. Under Mr. Rockefeller’s amendment, a government-run plan would inherit Medicare’s network of doctors and hospitals and pay them based on Medicare payment rates for its first two years.
All Republicans on the panel voted against Mr. Rockefeller’s amendment, in addition to five Democrats: Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus of Montana, Bill Nelson of Florida, Kent Conrad of North Dakota, Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas and Thomas Carper of Delaware.
But don’t get too excited yet. The healthcare bills, in their various incarnations, are still in the works.