Monday, August 27, 2007

What They're Really Saving About Governor Romney's Health Care Reform Plan

Governor Romney Proposes "Free-Market Solutions":

CNN's Wolf Blitzer: "Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is working today to put a more conservative spin on an issue that's being played up by Democrats. That would be health care for all Americans. In a speech to the Florida Medical Association today, Romney said the nation's health care system should be overhauled through plans tailored to individual states, not through the federal government by a takeover." (CNN's "The Situation Room," 8/24/07)

ABC-Miami's Michael Putney: "Mitt Romney was preaching to the choir today. Actually, to the Florida Medical Association and the doctors liked what had he to say about health care re-form." (WPLG-ABC, 8/24/07)

- Palm Beach Post's Bennett: "[R]omney was interrupted by applause when he criticized government-based approaches to healthcare and when he called for caps on awards to plaintiffs in malpractice lawsuits." (George Bennett, "Romney Offers Health Care Plan," Palm Beach Post, 8/24/07)

- Dr. Tom Peters: "I'm impressed with his hands-on knowledge and candor." (WPLG-ABC, 8/24/07) South Florida Sun Sentinel's Anthony Man: "Touting free-market solutions to expand insurance coverage and rejecting government mandates, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney rolled out his plan to change the health-care system on Friday." (Anthony Man, "GOP Candidate Romney Unveils Health-Care Plan," South Florida Sun-Sentinel, 8/24/07)

Race 4 2008's MattC: "Yesterday, Romney rolled out his health care proposal which contained 6 key points and is a beautiful triumph of conservatism and innovative thinking. ... And, the most beautiful part of Governor Romney?s plan? 'Most importantly, this can be done without the need for new spending or taxes.' Amen to that." (MattC, "'RomneyCare' Finds Broad Support, Nationwide Attention," Race 4 2008, 8/25/07)

The Associated Press' Rasha Madkour: "The nation's health care system can be overhauled through market-based proposals tailored to individual states - not through a federal government takeover, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said Friday." (Rasha Madkour, "Romney Proposes Market-Based Health Care Changes," The Associated Press, 8/24/07)

The Wall Street Journal's Sarah Lueck: "[R]omney is proposing an approach many Republicans in recent years have embraced – changing the tax code to spur more people to buy their own, private health insurance in the individual market." (Sarah Lueck, "Romney's Federal Prescription," The Wall Street Journal, 8/24/07)

Palm Beach Post's George Bennett: "Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney today said tax changes and deregulation can lower health insurance costs and extend coverage to millions of uninsured Americans without expanding federal regulation or raising taxes." (George Bennett, "Romney Offers Health Care Plan," Palm Beach Post, 8/24/07)

Bloomberg's Aliza Marcus: "Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney will propose tax breaks to help Americans pay for health insurance and incentives for states to craft their own programs to make sure everyone gets coverage." (Aliza Marcus, "Romney Seeks Tax Breaks To Help Buy Health Coverage," Bloomberg, 8/24/07)

CBS MarketWatch's William Watts: "Romney also aims to change the tax code to promote the use of health savings accounts - high-deductible insurance plans purchased outside the workplace. Romney also called for full deductibility of qualified medical expenses for persons who at least hold catastrophic insurance." (William L. Watts, "Romney Offers Health Plan," CBS MarketWatch, 8/24/07)

The Hill's Andy Barr: "Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) unveiled a healthcare plan Friday that would rely on the private sector to provide insurance to the tens of millions of Americans who currently do not have it." (Andy Barr, "Romney Pitches Health Plan," The Hill, 8/24/07)

Reuters: "Romney also targeted medical malpractice lawsuits which Republicans have castigated for years, saying they lead to rising costs of health care and insurance. His plan would cap punitive damages and encourage states to establish health courts with judges who have extensive experience with medical cases as well as urge sanctions for filing frivolous lawsuits." ("Romney Wants Tax Breaks To Expand U.S. Health Cover," Reuters, 8/24/07)

Poll Of AARP Iowa Members Finds Governor Romney "Best Addressed Health Care" Among Republican Candidates. "The poll of 1,002 AARP members in Iowa – half Republicans and half Democrats – was conducted July 24 through Aug. 6. It has a margin of error of 4.4 percent. On the Republican side, 13 percent of respondents said Romney best addressed health care with no other candidate more than 3 percent." ("Clinton, Romney Lead AARP Health-Care Poll," Quad-City Times, 8/23/07)

Governor Romney's Vision For Health Care Vs. The Democrats:

Bloomberg's Marcus: Governor Romney's Approach "In Contrast To The Leading Democratic Candidates." "Making changes on the federal or state level to help America's 45 million uninsured get coverage, and to make health care more affordable for everyone, will not require new spending or new taxes, Romney said. This is in contrast to the leading Democratic candidates, who have said they would pay for health-care changes by eliminating President George W. Bush's tax breaks for people earning more than $250,000 a year." (Aliza Marcus, "Romney Seeks Tax Breaks To Help Buy Health Coverage," Bloomberg, 8/24/07)

Harvard Health-Policy Professor Robert Blendon: "Romney's not setting up a single model for the country and that's what he wants to contrast with the Democrats. ? He wants to say we don't need a national plan, what we need is a 50-state plan." (Aliza Marcus, "Romney Seeks Tax Breaks To Help Buy Health Coverage," Bloomberg, 8/24/07)