Compromise rulings on The Obameter

Strengthen antitrust laws to prevent overcharging for malpractice insurance

"Strengthen antitrust laws to prevent insurers from overcharging physicians for their malpractice insurance."

Reimburse employer health plans for a portion of catastrophic costs

"Reimburse employer health plans for a portion of the catastrophic costs they incur above a threshold if they guarantee such savings are used to reduce the cost of workers' premiums."

Mandate insurance coverage of autism treatment

"Will mandate insurance coverage of autism treatment and will also continue to work with parents, physicians, providers, researchers, and schools to create opportunities and effective solutions for people with ASD (autism spectrum disorders)."

Fully fund the Combating Autism Act and Federal Autism Research Initiatives

"President Obama will fully fund the Combating Autism Act, which provides nearly $1 billion in autism-related funding over 5 years, and work with Congress, parents and ASD experts to determine how to further improve federal and state programs."

Provide $50 billion by 2013 for the global fight against HIV/AIDS

"Pledged to provide at least $50 billion by 2013 for the global fight against HIV/AIDS, including our fair share of the Global Fund, in order to at least double the number of HIV-positive people on treatment and continue to provide treatments to one-third of all those who desperately need them. This funding will allow the U.S. to meet its commitments that have been flat-funded by the Bush Administration, which includes expanding existing programs to help the millions of children orphaned and made vulnerable by AIDS, increasing the number of health care workers by at least one million, preventing violence against women and girls, and improving health care systems so that U.S. assistance can be fully and effectively utilized."

Direct the Secretary of Health and Human Services to conduct a study of federal cancer initiatives

"As president, Barack Obama will immediately direct his Secretary of Health and Human Services, in collaboration with agency officials, academic researchers, cancer survivors and advocates for people with cancer, and state public health officials, to comprehensively examine the various cancer-related efforts of federal agencies, and provide recommendations to eliminate barriers to effective coordination across federal agencies and between the federal government and other stakeholders."

Invest $10 billion per year in early intervention educational and developmental programs

"Barack Obama and Joe Biden will invest $10 billion per year in early intervention educational and developmental programs for children between zero and five. Their plan will help expand Early Head Start to serve more children with disabilities, and will spur states, through programs like Early Learning Challenge Grants, to expand programs for children with disabilities, such as IDEA Part C, and integrate these programs with other early childhood programs."

Set a national goal to provide re-screening for all 2-year-olds for developmental disorders

As part of support for universal infant screening, "support setting a national goal to provide re-screening for all two-year-olds – the age at which some conditions, including autism spectrum disorders, begin to appear. Part of Obama's early childhood intervention plan will be directed at coordinating fragmented community programs to help provide parents with information about screening for disabilities as infants and again as two-year olds."

Streamline the Social Security disability approval process

"The Social Security Administration (SSA) has been consistently under-funded, resulting in unconscionable delays in initial claims determinations and hearings for individuals applying for the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Social Security Supplement Security Income (SSI) programs. ... Barack Obama and Joe Biden are committed to streamlining the current application and appeals procedures to reduce the confusion that surrounds these important programs. As president, Obama will also ensure that the SSA has the funding it needs to hire judges and staff and to invest in technology to expedite final decisions."

Establish standards of care for traumatic brain injury treatment

"Establish standards of care for TBI (traumatic brain injury) treatment, require pre- and post-deployment screenings and improve case management so that service members get the best possible care."

Allow all veterans back into the Veterans Administration

As one of his "first acts" as president, Obama will sign an executive order "ending the unfair ban on healthcare enrollment of certain groups of veterans, including 'Priority 8' veterans who often earn modest incomes." Currently, veterans who have no service-connected disability and make above a certain amount of income are not allowed to enroll in the VA health program.

Make the Veterans Administration a national leader in health reform

"Make the VA a leader of national health care reform. … This includes efforts to improve electronic records interoperability, expand effectiveness research, promote wellness programs, and instill more accountability for performance and quality improvement initiatives."

Reduce the Veterans Benefits Administration claims backlog

"There are currently over 400,000 claims pending within the Veterans Benefits Administration, and over 800,000 claims receipts are expected in 2008 alone. … Obama will hire additional claims workers and convene our nation's leading veterans groups, employees and managers to develop an updated training and management model that will ensure that VA benefit decisions are rated fairly and consistently, and stem from adequate training and accountability for each claims adjudicator."

Institute electronic record-keeping for the Veterans Benefits Administration

"As president, Obama will transform the paper benefit claims process to an electronic system that will be interoperable with the VA's health network as well as military records. This will reduce error rates, improve timeliness, and enhance the overall quality of the claims decisions."

Issue a "best practices" report for states on reducing domestic violence

"His administration will also issue a joint report on 'best practices' across agencies and disseminate that information to the states."

Create a fund for international small and medium enterprises (SME)

"Building on the growing evidence that micro finance works, an Obama administration will provide initial capital for an SME Fund. Administered through the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, an independent U.S. government agency, the government will provide seed capital matched by a larger portion from the private sector. The SME Fund will be designed to provide seed capital and technical assistance to catalyze the establishment of job-creating small and medium enterprises, and to build the capacity of entrepreneurs to translate their ideas into viable businesses, including through the creation of regional 'SME Universities' supported by America's business schools."

Begin removing combat brigades from Iraq

"Barack Obama will work with military commanders on the ground in Iraq and in consultation with the Iraqi government to end the war safely and responsibly within 16 months."

Launch robust diplomatic effort with Iraq and its neighbors

"Launch an aggressive diplomatic effort to reach a comprehensive compact on the stability of Iraq and the region. ... include all of Iraq's neighbors -- including Iran and Syria, as suggested by the bi-partisan The Iraq Study Group Report."

Limit Guard and Reserve deployments to one year for every six years

Restore the Deployment Policies Under Which the Reserve and Guard Enlisted: America should recommit to the broken promises made to the men and women who serve in the Guard and Reserves. An Obama administration will: • Limit lengthy deployments to one year for every six years • Restore the 24-month limit on cumulative deployment time • End the "Stop-Loss" program of forcing troops to stay in service beyond their expected commitments.

Ensure the Guard and Reserves can meet their homeland security missions

"The poor readiness of America's Guard and Reserve forces threatens our ability to respond to natural disasters or terrorist attacks at home. We saw this, sadly, after both Hurricane Katrina and the tornadoes in Kansas. Because of the depletion of its resources in Iraq, the National Guard is less ready today than it was on 9/11. Nearly 90 percent of units have serious equipment shortages; many have less than 1/3 of the equipment they require. A particular focus of Obama's plan will be to reverse the trend of "cross-leveling," the cannibalizing of soldiers and machines from units back home for missions abroad."