This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Evan Bayh: Hypocrisy on the Public Option

He points out that lobbyists for his wife's companies aren't allowed contact with his staff as proof of the ethical wall that exists.

Yet Evan Bayh, Susan Bayh and WellPoint seem to share almost identical views on health care and the current public option debate. Bayh recently refused to commit to voting for cloture on a bill with a public option saying: "It's not fair to ask people to facilitate the enactment of policies with which we ultimately disagree."

Susan Bayh recently argued to Business Week that, "Traditional Medicare pays for quantity rather than quality, and all of the pilot programs that were intended to help government change that ... have failed." She strongly opposes any public option and instead supports reforms that would require everyone to own private insurance plans so that "everyone is in the pool."

WellPoint, the largest health insurer in the country, has 80 million customers who buy private insurance. It would greatly benefit from any government initiative to encourage more people to buy more private insurance. To that end, WellPoint spent $2.6 million in campaign contributions in 2008 for Democrat and Republican candidates. (Evan Bayh himself received more than $500,000 in campaign contributions from the health care industry in 2008.)

While my personal views on health care favor a market-based rather than a government-based solution, I find the hypocrisy of Evan Bayh highly offensive. You would have to be clueless not to see the conflict of interest of his views on this topic and the personal gain his family stands to reap as a result of his wife's connection to WellPoint, if his stated views -- in the name of his constituents -- are seen through.

Evan Bayh, Susan Bayh and WellPoint all look bad here. Until he recuses himself from votes on health care or she resigns from the WellPoint board, criticism of them on this topic will deservedly continue.

-- Written by Eric Jackson in Naples, Fla.

Editor's note: Here is a sampling of some of the reader email received on this column.
At the time of publication, Jackson had no positions in the stocks mentioned.

Eric Jackson is founder and president of Ironfire Capital and the general partner and investment manager of Ironfire Capital US Fund LP and Ironfire Capital International Fund, Ltd.
4 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
EMMS $0.59 1.72%
LLY $75.53 -1.22%
WLP $136.01 1.43%
AAPL $93.74 -1.15%
FB $117.58 0.73%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,773.64 -57.12 -0.32%
S&P 500 2,065.30 -10.51 -0.51%
NASDAQ 4,775.3580 -29.9330 -0.62%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs