An easy choice for the uninsured

AN EASY CHOICE FOR THE UNINSURED…. Reuters has an interesting item this afternoon on an analysis of the two presidential candidates’ healthcare plans.

An analysis of the two starkly different approaches to reforming the U.S. health care system offered by John McCain and Barack Obama suggests Obama’s plan has the best chance of making health care more affordable, accessible, efficient and higher in quality.

The report, released on Thursday by the Commonwealth Fund, sized up the presidential candidates’ plans for dealing with a health care system which has left nearly 46 million people uninsured and many more underinsured.

According to the report, Democrat Obama’s plan would cover 34 million of the nation’s projected 67 million uninsured people in 10 years, compared with just 2 million covered under Republican John McCain’s plan.

Karen Davis, president of the Commonwealth Fund said Obama’s proposal, unlike McCain’s, “tries to deal in a serious way with the uninsured.” She’s skeptical that Obama’s plan would cover literally all of the uninsured, at least early on, but Davis commends Obama for making this “a top priority” of his domestic agenda.

Reading the Reuters report, something unnerving popped out at me: it’s surprisingly good, straightforward journalism. There’s no forced “balance,” no annoying “he said, she said,” just a direct article about a report that drew an important conclusion about a crucial issue for voters.

As Ezra responded, “Don’t they want to obfuscate those conclusions a bit, or possibly give prominent play to some McCain campaign adviser lying about the facts of McCain’s health care proposal? As currently written, the reader walks away with a clear understanding of the evidence presented in the article and can’t help but realize that one candidate’s plan is substantively better than the other candidate’s plan. Something’s terribly wrong here.”

Yes, it is sad that it’s come to this.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.