Feature

'Give us the public option!'

Can rising poll numbers for a government-sponsored health insurance plan be trusted?

The eye-grabbing news from a CBS/New York Times poll: Almost three-quarters of Americans "support a government-sponsored health care plan." A similar ABC/Washington Post poll puts the figure at 57 percent. Has the demand for a public option really turned a corner?

No, the ABC/Post poll was "rigged": The reality, say the editorial writers at The Wall Street Journal, "is that no one wants a public option except the political Left ... doctors and hospitals hate the idea as much as insurers do—and they're far from natural allies.""The public option comeback"

Perhaps, but no one wants to fund the public option: Voter support won’t make one iota of difference to the Chamber of Commerce, labor unions, and other groups with a financial interest, says Rick Newman of U.S. News. "Hardly anybody has offered to pay a fair share." This battle makes Americans look like "kindergartners running up to a table of cookies, each determined to grab more than he's been apportioned.""The healthcare-reform hypocrisy sweepstakes"

This isn’t news, except in Washington: Support among voters has risen less that the Post’s breathless coverage suggests, says Timothy Noah on Slate, but maybe the Senate will finally notice. A common misapprehension in D.C. is that "the priorities of any random grouping of elected officials reflects the views of 'the American people.'" That isn't true ....""Sun rises in the East, sets in the West"

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