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Children's Healthcare Coverage Becomes 'Philosophical' Battle

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President Bush and the Republican Congress created the Medicare prescription drug benefit in 2003. No new revenue was provided to fund almost $330 billion for five years of increased costs. Now, at a cost of $56 billion in five years, Democrats and some Republicans want to increase health coverage for millions of uninsured children—by raising the tax on tobacco. But President Bush says that's a step toward "government-run healthcare." The dispute is coming to a head this week as Congress debates the State Children's Health Insurance Program, which has to be re-authorized before it expires in September. Why has SCHIP become a political football? Would increasing it be a step toward universal healthcare?  Do such well-intentioned stop-gaps prevent comprehensive healthcare reform?

Credits

Guests:
Emily Pierce - Roll Call - @emilyprollcall, John C. Goodman - President, National Center for Policy Analysis, Robert Greenstein - Center on Budget and Policy Priorities - @GreensteinCBPP, Patrick Morrisey - principal staff author of the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003, Daniel Callahan - Director of the Hasting Center

Host:
Warren Olney

Producers:
Vanessa Romo, Dan Konecky, Andrea Brody