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NFIB Dumbfounded When Asked: ‘Where Do You See Compromise On Your Side’?

By Igor Volsky on March 10, 2009 at 5:15 pm

"NFIB Dumbfounded When Asked: ‘Where Do You See Compromise On Your Side’?"

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Today, America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) — the insurance industry’s lobbying arm — is hosting a health care policy forum in Washington D.C. This is the first of a series of posts from inside the conference.

AHIP bills its National Policy Forum as “the nation’s premier conference for health industry executives, health policy analysts and experts for in-depth discussions and a diversity of perspectives on the most challenging health care policy issues facing our nation.”

But when ThinkProgress asked National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) President Dan Danner — whose organization opposes Obama’s employer mandate — where he’s willing to compromise with the President to pass comprehensive health care reform, Danner couldn’t answer this “challenging health care policy” question. After several seconds of silence, Danner simply reiterated his support for reform:

I mean, we’re anxious to get a solution. Compromise on what? I think that’s the — one of the challenges, if you’re talking about comprehensive health care, it’s a very complex puzzle, and how you fit all of the pieces together. You know? I don’t think that you can take any part of comprehensive health care in isolation. You have to talk about how’s all this fit together?

Watch it:

While all of the different stakeholders argue have claimed that they’re willing to compromise, few have specified specific points of concession. As Time Magazine reporter Karen Tumulty pointed out, “I think we’re all going to learn over the next few months, how and whether the environment really has changed all that much since 1994.”

Transcript:

I mean, we’re anxious to get a solution. Compromise on what? I think that’s the — one of the challenges, if you’re talking about comprehensive health care, it’s a very complex puzzle, and how you fit all of the pieces together. You know?

I don’t think that you can take any part of comprehensive health care in isolation. You have to talk about how’s all this fit together? We’re — as we’ve indicated here — we’re at a very different place then we were in ’93-’94. We’re working with not just the White House, but with a group called Divided We Fail, with SEIU and AARP.

We’re working with Ron Pollack and Families USA. So I think we’re at the table and, you know, we’ll look at compromise when we get to a bill or a piece of paper or a proposal. I mean, right now the discussion is still at the 30,000 feet range about concepts. And, you know, I think compromise comes when you get to the details and we’re not there yet.

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