Clive Crook wrote a brief piece for The Atlantic, entitled “The Long Road to Healthcare.”
It ends with paraphrasing Tom Daschle that the main problem with the Clinton health reform proposal (“HillaryCare” circa 1993) was the partisan and exclusive way it was built.
There are many similarities between Hillary’s, Obama’s and Daschle’s plans but the difference is that Hillary and her team “devised a 1,342-page law that nailed down every last detail of the system” without involving any of their oppoents. Because opposing groups weren’t involved in the process they were a lot less invested in the plan, much more likely to attack the plan, and they had every possible detail to fuel their arguments without having to ever propose any alternative solution.
The exciting thing about the promise behind Obama’s presidency is the focus on transparency and inclusion. It sounds like both the president-elect and Dachle want to be open, with both supporters and opposing groups, in the creation of a new healthcare plan.
I do fear that Obama won’t have enough resources to see everything through and live up to our extremely high expectations — but I’m way more excited that an administration is finally taking transparency seriously. We live in good times.