Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Administrative Moves to Keep Children Uninsured

New Bush Policies Limit Reach of Child Insurance Plan

Washington Post Staff Writer Tuesday, August 21, 2007; Page A04

The Bush administration, engaged in a battle with Congress over whether a popular children's health insurance program should be expanded, has announced new policies that will make it harder for states to insure all but the lowest-income children.

The administrative move, announced while lawmakers are out of town during the August recess, comes after the White House has wrangled with Congress for months over the future of the $5 billion-a-year program.

The Senate and the House have passed legislation that would dramatically increase funding and make it possible to sign up millions of new children for coverage. But President Bush wants to keep the program largely unchanged and has promised to veto either bill, saying they would inappropriately increase the federal role in health care.

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Every time Congress recesses, President Bush makes some administrative judgment about an appointment or derails a congressional intent in some other way.

This time it's kids and health insurance. Bush is afraid the federal program may be so popular that it shows up the flaws, excessive private profits and inconsistencies of insured health care as we know it.

And, of course he's right. It would do just that.


* For more in-depth articles from Jim on Health Care, check out Opinion-Columns.com