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Big moral victory: WellPoint rolls over on rescission

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Where were Mitch, Zoeller, and their Republican cohorts
  • Image by the U.S. Army, via Wikimedia Commons
  • Where were Mitch, Zoeller, and their Republican cohorts

Great news in the world of health care today, as reported by Reuters:

WellPoint Inc. said that as of May 1 it would expedite health care reforms and stop dropping health care coverage for customers after they get sick, responding to pressure from Democrats in Congress and the Obama administration.

The health insurer announced its decision Tuesday after Democrats from three U.S. House committees earlier in the day wrote to seven health insurance executives urging them to immediately stop the practice, known as rescission. A separate letter from 57 Democrats was directed at WellPoint alone.

via WellPoint says will stop dropping patients after May 1 | Business Insurance.

As you'll recall from last week, a Reuters investigation revealed that WellPoint, the country's largest insurer based on enrollment, was dropping women who contracted breast cancer. WellPoint, based in Indianapolis, had received millions in tax credits and forgivable loans by the state in order to expand its local operations.

That amounts to our having indirectly paid for such outrageous malfeasance, and I have argued that nothing short of a criminal investigation by Greg Zoeller, the state's attorney general, should be acceptable.

Zoeller was at the ready when more than a dozen states attorneys general banded together to sue the federal government for what they claim is an unconstitutional basis of Obama's health care reform package.

But where was Zoeller — and, for that matter, Gov. Mitch Daniels and his Republican cohorts in Congress — during all of this? Nowhere to be found. Once again it was House Democrats — and they only — who put the pressure on WellPoint to discontinue what is an abhorrent, reprehensible practice according to any standard of human dignity, red or blue.

I don't want to sound like a Democratic Party shill here, because I have deep reservations about certain aspects of federal health care reform as it was passed. But if Republicans can't step up to the plate for softballs like this one — where the line between good and evil couldn't be clearer — they don't deserve a seat at the table, on this issue or any other (can someone say financial reform?)

Kudos Reuters and Democrats. Shame on WellPoint and the Republican partisans that prize political favor over human health and dignity. Will the party of pro-life please stand?

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