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Regardless of how Congress disposes of health care legislation this year, the health care debate will continue and intensify. To be prepared, conservatives need to re-learn the lessons of recent history. After the collapse of President Clinton's signature legislative proposal and the 1994 midterm elections defeat, the Clinton Administration nonetheless continued to define the terms of the debate and won a series of incremental health policy victories, including passage of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA) of 1996 and the creation of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) as well as unprecedented restrictions on private contracting in Medicare. As a result, the government now controls roughly half of all health care spending.
With President Obama's unpopular health care agenda in trouble on Capitol Hill, there is increasing talk about pursuing a "smaller, more incremental" strategy to achieve it. To avoid the furtherance of government expansion and control of health care, conservatives need to understand these historical lessons to properly focus the debate on expanding the control of individuals and families through private markets, where health care decisions and dollars are directed by them as they see best for their needs.
More About the Speakers
Featuring Remarks by
The Honorable John Shadegg (R-AZ)
United States House of Representatives
Followed by a Discussion with
The Galen Institute
Robert Moffit, Ph.D.
Center for Health Policy Studies,
The Heritage Foundation