Posted By Michael Collins
Successful health care reform eluded both Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. It could be argued that one tried a bit harder at it than the other, but there's little question that the issue will command a significant amount of Barack Obama's attention after he's sworn into office--in large part because the people who elected him care so much about it.
Though 62% of voters ranked the economy as their chief concern, according to exit polls conducted Tuesday by the Associated Press and major television networks, 9% of voters listed health care as a primary concern. That trailed the number of voters worried about Iraq by only 1% and tied the percentage of those troubled by terrorism.
Though some experts don't expect to see major changes until 2010, Obama's proposal has set the tone for a debate about how to cut rising costs while providing insurance to 45 million Americans. While certain elements of Obama's proposal could be modified, at its core are principles that would change health care delivery and coverage in the U.S.