Republican Senator Olympia Snow of Maine says that she cannot agree to a healthcare proposal made by Senator Max Baucus, Chair of the Senate Finance Committee. The Baucus plan would eliminate the public plan option and replace it with co-operatives designed to assist people finding low-cost health insurance. The plan would mandate coverage.
The plan would seek to avoid deficit spending by applying a tax on the most expensive health plans. The vast majority of these plans are employer-sponsored, and they currently receive favorable treatment under federal and state tax laws. Even though an employer's payment of premiums represents "income," the government does not tax these payments.
Snowe believes that the tax would hurt Maine residents because insurance policies in Maine are among the highest in the country. The Baucus plan, however, would utilize a gradual phase-in period for high cost states like Maine. By contrast, premium payments would eventually finance the public plan, which would potentially make it revenue neutral (unlike moderate and conservative plans).
Snowe's disagreement means that no Republican Senators currently support the Baucus plan (which was supposed to represent the compromise plan). And????