"Medicaid is a poor vehicle for expanding coverage," added Mr. Bredesen, a former health care executive. "It's a 45-year-old system originally designed for poor women and their children. It's not health care reform to dump more money into Medicaid."
And so Tennessee is taking the lead in opposing the health care overhaul plans now before Congress. John Tanner voted against the House bill in committee, Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker are outspoken in the Senate, Marsha Blackburn is mugging for the cameras at every opportunity, and Jim Cooper is a key player as a purported health care expert among the Blue Dog Democrats. Now add Bredesen, another so-called health care expert, to the list. They all will either (1) save the day by forcing Congress to figure out ways to include more cost controls in the reform or (2) share the blame for killing this opportunity to fix the problem.
On CNN, White House budget director Peter Orszag accused opponents of trying to run out the clock: "There are those who are advocating delay just as a desperation move to try to kill it." That's a good point. We're waiting to hear solutions from all these Tennessee public officials who have been complaining about the plans so far.