New “jury” for health care

For the past few months we have watched the media and Congress bicker over the general philosophies and finer points of major issues like NAFTA and national health care.

Now that President Clinton, via his wife Hillary Rodham-Clinton, has laid his cards on the table in terms of a proposal for national health care, the bickering will more than likely intensify as members of Congress look at the proposal to try to find out what is or what is not in it for them and their constituents.

It is also certain that special interest groups close to the issue will be diving in deeper with massive lobbying.

What about the average American? How does Clinton’s plan affect them?

The media does a pretty good job of analyzing these complex issues for those who care to spend the time reading, but there’s still something lacking in the actual decision-making process.

A new approach is now being tried in Washington, designed with the very purpose of looking at how the average American will be affected by the health care proposal.

The citizen’s jury is a newly devised experiment where two dozen citizens will sit as jurors and judge all of the major health care proposals.

Jurors will be chosen at random but will be weighted according to race, gender, age, income, etc. to reflect the entire American society.

Congress is supposed to represent the entire American society, but the fact is, despite Congress’ noblest efforts, things don’t end up that way.

About 20 non-partisan experts will present the majority of the material to the jurors, who will vote on fine-tuning or scrapping any the proposals.

Of course the citizen’s jury will have no real power, or will they? The decision will more than likely be announced before Congress, which is expected to make a decision. If the media gives much attention to the jury decision, you’d better believe Congress will.