Bending A Promise

Clinton softens his stance on coverage for everyone, but is he getting close to bargaining it away?

Read my pen. Americans admired Bill Clinton's nerve and determination last January when he told Congress he was willing to compromise on every aspect of his proposal except one: universal coverage. "If you send me legislation that does not guarantee every American private health insurance that can never be taken away," he told Congress in January, "you will force me to take this pen, veto the legislation, and we'll come right back here and start all over again."

But this is no time for bravado. In an attempt to jump-start a stalled legislative process, the President last week indicated to key...

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