Dan Gillmor

Obama Flubs it on Taxpayer-Funded Insurance

Wall Street Journal: Taxpayers May Face Hurricane Tab. As hurricane season begins, Democrats in Congress want to nationalize a chunk of the insurance business that covers major storm-damage claims. The proposal — backed by giant insurers Allstate Corp. and State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co., as well as Florida lawmakers — focuses on “reinsurance,” the policies bought by insurers themselves to protect against catastrophic losses. The proposal envisions a taxpayer-financed reinsurance program covering all 50 states, which would essentially backstop the giant insurers in case of disaster.

This is a fiscal disaster in the making if it passes. It will encourage even more reckless coastal development that would be uneconomic if the people who benefit had to bear the real costs of what they’re doing.

Republican presidential candidate John McCain opposes it. Democrat Barak Obama is for it. McCain is on the right side of this issue, and I don’t mean the right wing.

Obama has been presenting himself as a candidate who wants to tell the truth to the American people — to run a government that recognizes reality and doesn’t continue the lies of the past. His support of this legislation is a giant blind spot in his vision.