Bloggers try to connect Baucus plan, WellPoint

An analysis by blogger Kevin Conner over at LittleSis seems to point to connections between Montana Sen. Max Baucus’ plan for health reform and insurance heavyweight WellPoint. While nothing has been set in stone, they are the sort of sprawling connections that should be explored and accounted for as the Baucus plan is evaluated, especially in light of the Senator’s well-documented financial connections to the health industry (Hat tip to NPR Health Blog‘s Scott Hensley).

Sen. Max Baucus

Sen. Max Baucus

A glance at the proposal’s Microsoft Word Metadata shows the name of Liz Fowler, a former WellPoint VP who now works for Baucus on the Senate Finance Committee. Furthermore, Wyoming Republican Sen. Mike Enzi’s former chief health adviser, Stephen Northrup, is now WellPoint’s top reform lobbyist. Enzi is a member of Baucus’ bipartisan “Gang of Six,” a group that helped shape the Healthy Future Act. It’s also interesting that, according to Conner, “key provisions in the Baucus plan apparently draw on industry-inspired legislation first introduced by Enzi in 2006, while Northrup was still his chief health aide.”

According to their Web site, “LittleSis is a project of Public Accountability Initiative, a nonprofit nonpartisan research and educational organization focused on government and corporate accountability.”

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