Not 7 years - more like ten. Remember the run-up to the 2008 election? It was a major issue in the election. https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/instructors/setups2008/campaign-issues.jsp "One of the clearest difference between the candidates was in their approach to health care. Obama argued that major federal legislation was needed to reform the health care system. Specifically, he proposed government action to prevent health insurance companies from denying coverage to people on the basis of their existing health condition. He also proposed taxing employers who did not provide health care insurance to their employees (with exemptions for small employers). He further proposed reducing the number of uninsured individuals by expanding Medicaid and by establishing a government run health insurance program that would allow those who did not have health insurance to purchase it at a reasonable cost. McCain took a more free market approach to reforming health care (Shear 2008). He proposed taxing the health insurance benefits for those who were covered by their employer, arguing that it was unfair for that group to receive insurance benefits tax free, while others paid taxes on the money that they used to purchase insurance. Instead, all individuals would receive a tax credit that they could use to purchase health care insurance under McCain's plan. He argued that greater competition in the health insurance market would result in lower costs and greater coverage." The reason it took that long to introduce, amend and pass that emasculated version was the howling - rabid, scurrilous, not to mention libelous - opposition by Republicans, in the legislature, in the town-hall meetings, in the media, and in the courts. I don't recall them trying to endorse McCain's half-assed plan. Did anyone seriously advocate it?