From a newsmaker breakfast with Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) sponsored by the Kaiser Family Foundation, Families USA, and the National Federation of Independent Business, Washington, D.C.:
Sen. Baucus was short on details but long on optimism that a comprehensive health reform bill would come up for a vote this June…or maybe July, anyway. At today’s ‘Health Care Reform Newsmakers’ breakfast , he said he is in constant contact with the key players in this endeavor, including HHS Secretary-designate Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D-Kan.), Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), and Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.), with whom Sen. Baucus reported, quite soberly, he is having lunch this week.
I want to be optimistic about health reform, too. But when the most specific piece of News that a health care Newsmaker can report at the Newsmaker’s Breakfast is that he is having lunch with one of his colleagues, there is truly a long way to go. Note to Sens. Baucus and Kennedy: Darlington House restaurant has a nice quiche.