Even by the Administration's own claims the cost containment elements have been removed

I have written many times about how different parts of the Democrats' government takeover of health insurance will raise costs. Dems have focused on insurance taxes that would reduce demand for health as their way of reducing costs, but now that is gone also. Of course, Obama promised in the campaign not to use such taxes, then he promised to use them, not he isn't using them. So Is this returning to his original promise or breaking a broken promise?

At Thursday’s health summit, President Barack Obama is almost certain to highlight the importance of reining in skyrocketing health care costs.

But in his own health care bill, it’s a different story.

Obama has put off a tax on high-cost health plans until 2018 — long after he’s out of office, even if he’s a two-termer.And in doing so, he’s essentially neutered the last significant Democratic push to control health costs.

When Obama launched his health care project, the case for reform rested on two pillars. One was helping people who had no insurance or were otherwise struggling with the current system. The other was taking dramatic steps to halt the growth in costs. As the debate lurches toward a close, the emphasis in Obama’s plan now rests overwhelmingly on the first pillar — with only the most modest and preliminary measures being embraced for cost control.

“They thought [the tax] was a major part of their ability to slow the growth in private-sector premiums. And now, at least until after 2017, it doesn’t look like they will bend the cost curve,” said Ken Thorpe, an Emory University professor and Democratic health policy adviser.

In fact, the delay raises questions about whether the tax will ever return. Obama’s punted the decision to some future president and some future Congress that would have to let a brand-new tax come into effect on their watch. . . .

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