December 1, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Trying to align lawmakers with the people they represent, Congress three years ago decided that when the new healthcare plan took effect, members would give up their platinum health benefits and enroll in the online marketplaces created for millions of other Americans. In typical congressional fashion, however, things have not worked out exactly as advertised. While many members of Congress are indeed signing up for health coverage through the District of Columbia exchange - which was designated as the provider for all members - their experiences have been significantly better than those of average consumers in several respects, including more generous benefits packages, VIP customer service from insurers and the same government-subsidized premiums they've always enjoyed.
June 30, 2006
Re "Lawmakers, Gov. Reach Budget Deal," June 27 In a $131-billion budget, it is hard to understand how $23 million that would have provided healthcare to needy kids was a major sticking point. It is disappointing that a few legislators blocked what most policymakers and the public know is good policy. Californians will have the opportunity to finish the goal of ensuring that all children have health insurance with the Tobacco Tax Act of 2006 on the November ballot. WENDY LAZARUS Founder and Co-President The Children's Partnership Santa Monica Children's Partnership is a nonprofit group that promotes health coverage for California children.
March 19, 2010
We heard this week from a friend of the Op-Ed page, Carolyn Keenan Kmiec, the wife of Douglas Kmiec. Both are on leave from Pepperdine University while Doug is serving as U.S. ambassador to the Republic of Malta. As strong supporters of President Obama's efforts to have healthcare understood as a basic human right, they are constantly being asked why the U.S. lacks the universal coverage that exists even in a far less affluent nation like Malta. This is an especially awkward question, noted Carol, "when one considers that Maltese doctors view house calls -- in this age of obesity and poor nutritional habits -- as vital to the doctor-patient relationship."
November 21, 2009 |
Democrats and their allies formally moved their healthcare bill to the Senate floor tonight, rebuffing Republicans and ensuring that lawmakers will get a long and acrimonious debate on the overhaul of the healthcare system. All 58 Democrats and the two independents who usually vote with them backed cloture on a motion to proceed, a needed procedural step to bring the Democratic-backed healthcare bill to the floor and open formal debate. Thirty-nine Republicans opposed the motion.
December 2, 2009
Senate Democrats will have to win several procedural votes if they are to send President Obama a healthcare bill. AMENDMENTS Lawmakers from both parties are allowed to offer amendments to the healthcare bill. When expected: Now through Christmas or beyond. Votes required: Subject to negotiation, with 60 likely for more contentious amendments. CLOTURE TO END DEBATE ON THE BILL Required to end a Republican filibuster and move to a vote on the bill.
March 28, 2012 |
As tough questions swirled about President Obama's healthcare reform law, White House officials said Wednesday that they aren't making plans for the possibility that the Supreme Court knocks some or all of it down. The White House expects that the law will be upheld, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said, and is focused on implementing the healthcare law. “There's no contingency planning going on,” Earnest told reporters. “We remain fully confident in the believe that the Affordable Care Act is constitutional.” Senior administration officials also defended the work of Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, after a spate of critical assessments rendered by left-leaning writers in the wake of Tuesday's oral arguments.
June 21, 2012 |
WASHINGTON -- Television cameras will surround the Supreme Court Thursday morning, as they did Monday, anticipating something that may, again, not happen. The momentous healthcare decision could be announced Thursday. Or not. All we really know is that it is extremely likely to be handed down by the following Thursday, June 28, when the court is expected to end its current term. The court works in secrecy as it prepares its opinions, and outsiders might be surprised to learn that some of its work is done at the last minute.
March 29, 2010
Unspoiled beauty Re "Saving the untrampled," March 22 Thanks to The Times for introducing many to the proposed Berryessa Snow Mountain National Conservation Area. It is California's best-kept secret -- a place where our state's diverse natural landscapes come together and can still be seen unspoiled. It has valleys where elk graze on wildflower prairies stretching as far as the eye can see, just as John Muir described them in 1868. Deeply shadowed old-growth forests -- home to Pacific giant salamanders, banana slugs, Pacific fishers and blue grouse -- extend north to Alaska but begin in this area.