Blackburn: We need a Travelocity for healthcare

Lawmakers may look to airfare savings websites like Travelocity.com as a model for comparing health insurance policies.

Two congressmen said during an interview on CNN Monday that the travel reservation hubs could provide a model for consumers when they pick and choose the best and most cost-efficient insurance policy for themselves.

"There is a concept that Newt Gingrich has pushed forward with -- like a Travelocity-type concept, where you could go in and compare rates and compare what is offered in insurance plans," Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) said. "That greater transparency will help lead to greater competition, and that is something that is badly needed in the health insurance market."

Interesting, Blackburn's more liberal Tennessee colleague said he's mostly in agreement on the need for such a hub to compare prices.

"The exchange would be an opportunity at a national level for people to compare the different insurance policies or offerings," Rep. Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) said, adding that the inclusion of a public option would keep those rates at a fair level.

Still, Cohen warned against hopes for a broader compromise on healthcare: He said Democrats and Republicans are "probably as far apart as the two sides of the Grand Canyon" on the issue.