After receiving a less-than-spectacular reception from his congressional colleagues for his health care reform bill last week, Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., is going back to the drawing board to work on some big changes in an effort to win more of his aforementioned peers to his side. Meanwhile, Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, remains undeclared about his first draft. —KA
The Washington Post:
As expected, lawmakers have their own ideas for improving Baucus’s proposal, and have submitted 564 amendments for consideration this week by the Finance Committee. Many of the amendments focus on making insurance more affordable for those who would be forced to buy policies under the plan, on modifying or eliminating Baucus’s proposed sources of financing, and on protecting Medicare beneficiaries from a laundry list of proposed spending cuts.
Baucus is looking at making more middle-income families eligible for federal insurance subsidies. His original bill would subsidize people earning between 300 percent and 400 percent of the federal poverty level only if premiums cost more than 13 percent of their income. The House bill sets that cap at 12 percent, and a source close to the discussion said Baucus could go to 12 percent or lower.