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Monday, July 20, 2009

Romney 2012? Two Words: Romney Care

The last few days conservatives have begun to demonize the health care system in Massachusetts. That's because, in the view of many conservatives, Massachusetts' health care system is congruent to the health care system that President Obama is attempting to construct. That's simplified. Here's how it's similar. It requires every citizen to have health insurance. It requires all employers, but the smallest, to provide health insurance to their employees. Finally, those that don't make enough money have their insurance subsidized. Here's how it's different. It has no public option.

Here's the important point. Universal health care in Massachusetts has FAILED.

The new state budget in Massachusetts eliminates health care coverage for some 30,000 legal immigrants to help close a growing deficit, reversing progress toward universal coverage just as Congress looks to the state as a model for overhauling the nation’s health care system.

Gov. Deval Patrick wants to restore $70 million to partly cover legal immigrants. The affected immigrants, permanent residents who have had green cards for less than five years, are now covered under Commonwealth Care, a subsidized insurance program for low-income residents that is central to the groundbreaking health care law enacted here in 2006.

Critics of the cut, which would save an estimated $130 million, say it unfairly targets taxpaying residents and threatens the state’s health care experiment at a critical time.

It's failure is the real world example of what happens when you add people to the system without adding doctors. That's what opponents of the current plan say. What the president says is that we already give those people care and without insurance they cost more to the system. Interestingly, and ironically, here's what the Governor Mitt Romney said when he was about to sign his version of universal health care.

Medical care for Massachusetts patients who lack health insurance is paid for by businesses. Companies -- mostly ones that already offer coverage to their employees -- subsidize a fund that pays for so-called "free" care when uninsured people end up in hospitals.

"We're spending a billion dollars giving health care to people who don't have insurance," Romney says. "And my question was: Could we take that billion dollars and help the poor purchase insurance? Let them pay what they can afford. We'll subsidize what they can't."

Replace Massachusetts with the U.S. and Romney with Obama and there's almost no difference between the way Romney sold his form of universal health care and the way the current president is selling his.

Is there any doubt that Republicans hate Obamacare? They don't merely hate it but with a passion. What's the signature piece of legislation for Mitt Romney? It's his version of universal health care.

While they aren't identical, they are plenty similar. It's failure in Massachusetts speaks for itself. Just today I see that Rasmussen has Mitt Romney leading among Republicans. Give me a break. Romney is supposed to be the fiscal conservative standard bearer and his signature policy is breaking the state's bank. I'm supposed to believe that three years after waging a fierce battle to keep universal health care from being imposed on the nation, the very same party will choose as its standard bearer the man that imposed it on his state. I don't think so. Romney's chances for 2012 went by the way of Romney Care.


Anonymous said...

You realize that Obama's supporters will latch on to what's happening in Massachusetts as evidence that conservative opposition to a public option must be defeated at all costs.

I guess not allowing companies to profit from health care is one way to keep prices down...

mike volpe said...

True believers will believe until the end. That's a separate question. Obama's plan is doomed and I have written plenty about that. I do, however, believe that Romney's bid is also doomed with the failure of Romney Care.

Arkady said...

I live in MA and Romney is certainly no conservative, nor were his budget cuts all tha the made them out to be. A little bit of research and people discover that he moved billions off-budget and claimed he shrunk the budget that way? RomneyCare has not failed per se, but its putting a strain on the doubt there.

Romney is still the best fiscal conservative on the national stage, what does that say about the Republican party?

CF said...

Obama is still the best liberal on the national stage, what does that say about the Democrat party?