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Obama's One-Time Doc Opposes President On Health Care

President Barack Obama's former long-time physician doesn't think much of the health-care overhaul plan his most famous former patient is promoting today in North Carolina and Virginia.

It's only one man's opinion, of course. And just because he's an internist doesn't make Dr. David Scheiner of Hyde Park Associates in Medicine in Chicago an expert on health-care economics.

But it certainly doesn't help the president's marketing effort that his doctor of 22 years doesn't support the congressional plan that incorporates the president's principles. Scheiner's opposition has been known publicly for a while but he gets the banner headline treatment today on the Huffington Post.

For the record, Scheiner supports the concept of single-payer health care and like many supporters of that idea he's underwhelmed by the president's plan.

A HuffPo excerpt:

Dr. David Scheiner, a 70-year Chicago-based physician who treated Obama for more than 20 years, said he was disheartened by the health care legislation his former patient is championing, calling it piecemeal and ineffectual.

"I look at his program and I can't see how it's going to work," Scheiner told the Huffington Post. "He has no cost control. There would be no effective cost control in his program. The [Congressional Budget Office] said it's going be incredibly expensive ... and the thing that I really am worried about is, if it is the failure that I think it would be, then health reform will be set back a long, long time."

Scheiner was hesitant about trying to divine the president's motives, although he said he believed that "in his heart of hearts" Obama "may well like a single-payer program. But his pragmatism is what is overwhelming him." Scheiner added: "I think he's afraid that he can't get anything through if he doesn't go through this incredibly compromised program."