Earlier this week, the White House made a bold announcement to possibly utilize a political process called “reconciliation” to bypass the need for bipartisan support of health care reform legislation in the Senate. With this process, only a simple majority of 51 votes is needed to get a vote on the senate floor rather than the normal 60. Despite the threat, the White House says it is still willing to listen to any perspective and do its best to gain bipartisan support.
According to CNN, a Democratic-only plan would not be supported by the majority of the American public. CNN cited a Quinnipiac University poll that shows 59% of Americans are opposed to a Democratic-only bill with 36% in support. Perception of Republican efforts at health care reform is worse with an NBC News poll showing approval by only 21% of Americans.
Currently, if the White House does choose to execute reconciliation, it will still have to work hard to gain consensus among its own party, as there is still much debate between liberal and conservative Democrats. We’ll keep you posted.
In other news:
AP reports that Medicare drug premiums will see a slight increase in 2010, which will equate to about a $2 rise in seniors’ monthly payment for prescription drug coverage next year. CMS announced that the average monthly premium will be about $30 next year.
An LTC insurance study by the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance shows that in 2008 nearly 50% of all buyers were under 65, while roughly 10% were between 45 and 54. 66% of buyers were women, and the average single premium was $70,975. This study analyzed more than 5,000 new policies. The overall market outlook from the group is positive with sales expected to increase in the coming years.
Lastly, I came across an interesting press release by ProspectZone on InsuranceNewsNet.com. It discusses how calling new insurance leads in the evenings and weekends is a better way to capitalize on those leads rather than calling during normal business hours. For those of you who do this, do you agree? Do you get a better response when contacting clients during off hours?
Sources: CNN, AP, SMA, INN