The “public option” — a government-run health insurance plan — may be dead. Or is it? From an editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal:

Another path may be to convert private insurance companies into public utilities outright. In a New York Times op-ed on Sunday, Mr. Obama reiterated his plan to regulate who the insurers must cover, how generous the benefits must be and how much they can charge, including a limit on out-of-pocket spending. If Democrats decide to centrally plan the insurance market, in what sense is that different from a public option?

How government mucks around in the insurance market is less important than the fact it does.

(Cross-posted from State House Call.)

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