Is White House Willing to Ditch Public Option in Favor of "Trigger"?
EMANUEL SEES A NEGOTIABLE PATH.... President Obama has repeatedly and publicly touted the advantages of a full public option in health care reform. His chief of staff, however, signaled yesterday that the White House remains flexible.
It is more important that health-care legislation inject stiff competition among insurance plans than it is for Congress to create a pure government-run option, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel said.
"The goal is to have a means and a mechanism to keep the private insurers honest," he said in an interview. "The goal is non-negotiable; the path is" negotiable.
Specifically, Emanuel told the WSJ that a "trigger" would be consistent with the administration's goals. The paper reported, "Emanuel said one of several ways to meet Mr. Obama's goals is a mechanism under which a public plan is introduced only if the marketplace fails to provide sufficient competition on its own."