Friday, September 21, 2012

The Medicaid Controversy––The Republican Governors Should Put Up or Shut Up

Indiana, New Mexico, and Wisconsin are asking the federal government to exempt people making between 100% and 133% of the poverty level from the upcoming Medicaid expansion.

These Republican governors need to put up or shut up.

Ever since the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Republican governors have been clamoring for block granting Medicaid.

The Supreme Court ruled that a state doesn't have to accept the new Medicaid expansion money under the ACA.

Many Republican governors––all of them actually––were saying before the Court ruling that the Medicaid expansion was yet another unfunded federal mandate they could not afford. Now the Court has told them they don't have to do it.

Be careful what you wish for.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Romney Intends to Repeal “Obamacare” in 2013—Has He Thought Through the Unintended Consequences If He Does?

Romney says he will repeal “Obamacare” if he is elected. Given that this has been part of his platform from the beginning of the campaign he is entitled to do that if he wins.

I did not support passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2010 because I saw it as an unaffordable entitlement expansion with no real hope of containing costs.

But the practical reality of killing the Affordable Care Act in 2013 is a different matter.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Obama vs. Romney: A Detailed Analysis of Mitt Romney’s Health Care Reform Plan

Let’s take a look at Mitt Romney’s Health Care plan using his own outline ("Mitt’s Plan") on his website.

Romney's approach to health care reform summarized:
  • "Kill Obamacare" - There seems to be no chance Romney would try to fix the Affordable Care Act––he would repeal all of it.
  • No new federal health insurance reform law - There is no indication from his policy outline that he would try to replace the health care reform law for those under age-65 ("Obamacare") with a new federal law--his emphasis would be on making it easier for the states to tackle the issue as he did in Massachusetts.
  • Small incremental steps - His approach for health insurance reform for those under age-65 relies on relatively small incremental market ideas when compared to the Democrats big Affordable Care Act--tort reform, association purchasing pools, insurance portability, more information technology, greater tax deductibility of insurance, purchasing insurance across state lines, more HSA flexibility.
  • Getting the federal government out of the Medicaid program - He would fundamentally change Medicaid by putting the states entirely in control of it and capping the annual federal contribution--"block-granting."
  • Big changes for Medicare - Romney offers a fundamental reform for Medicare beginning for those who retire in ten years by creating a more robust private Medicare market and giving seniors a defined contribution premium support to pay for it.

Romney vs. Obama--Romney Would Kill "Obamacare"

“On his first day in office, Mitt Romney will issue an executive order that paves the way for the federal government to issue Obamacare waivers to all fifty states. He will then work with Congress to repeal the full legislation as quickly as possible.”

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