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Business Leaders Support 'Free Choice' Amendment to Senate Health-Care Bill

Committee for Economic Development Backs Effort to Improve Choice and Competition

WASHINGTON, Sept. 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Committee for Economic Development (CED) today urged the Senate Finance Committee to amend the America's Health Future Act (sponsored by Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT)) by adopting the "Free Choice" amendment submitted Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR). The "Free Choice" amendment is a key element of the Healthy Americans Act (S. 391) which was endorsed by CED in June of this year.

"Consumer choice among health plans is essential. Senator Wyden's amendment to the Senate Finance Committee bill would add consumer choice and make reform work. Choice would lead to real competition in health care, and that is the only way to bring costs under control for business and consumers," said CED President Charles Kolb.

In July, CED released a statement (link) opposing bills that would expand coverage but fail to control costs. CED said that merely expanding the current inflationary and inefficient system would raise the cost of health care and threaten everyone's coverage. The Wyden Amendment would avoid that danger by bringing choice and competition to health care so that consumers benefit financially from choosing a more efficient health plan.

"All Americans need better choices for health insurance, and the Wyden proposal is a way to achieve that important objective," said Carl Camden, President and Chief Executive Officer of Kelly Services, Inc. and a CED Trustee. "The need is especially acute for the 25% of the U.S. workforce who work outside the traditional employer-employee relationship, and are significantly disadvantaged solely on the basis of their workstyle choice."

For more information on CED's work on health-care reform, please visit

CED is a non-profit, non-partisan organization of more than 200 business leaders and university presidents. Since 1942, its research and policy programs have addressed many of the nation's most pressing economic and social issues, including education reform, workforce competitiveness, campaign finance, health care, and global trade and finance. CED promotes policies to produce increased productivity and living standards, greater and more equal opportunity for every citizen, and an improved quality of life for all.

CONTACT: Morgan Broman of Committee for Economic Development, +1-202-296-5860 ext. 14,

SOURCE Committee for Economic Development
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