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“Health care is more than just one-sixth of the American economy. It is a source of well-being for individuals and families. We are blessed with much that is good in American health care. But we have taken a turn for the worse with ObamaCare, with its high taxes and vastly expanded federal control over our lives. I believe the better course is to empower the states to determine their own health care futures...

“If I am elected president, I will issue on my first day in office an executive order paving the way for waivers from ObamaCare for all 50 states. Subsequently, I will call on Congress to fully repeal ObamaCare.

“The reforms that I propose, which are based on the same philosophical tenets as the reforms I offered during my last presidential campaign in 2008, return power to the states, improve access by slowing health care cost increases, and make health insurance portable and flexible for today's economy.

Step 1: Give states the responsibility, flexibility and resources to care for citizens who are poor, uninsured or chronically ill... both to improve their access to care and to improve the functioning of insurance markets for others.

Step 2: Reform the tax code to promote the individual ownership of health insurance. The tax code offers open-ended subsidies for the purchase of insurance through employers. This subsidy is unfair — as it doesn't apply to insurance purchased on one's own. I propose to give individuals a choice between the current system and a tax deduction to buy insurance on their own. This simple change creates the best of both worlds. Absolutely nothing will change for those who like their current coverage. And individuals who don't get coverage through their employers will have portable, lower-cost options.

Step 3: Focus federal regulation of health care on making markets work. This means both correcting common failures in insurance markets as well as eliminating counterproductive federal rules. For example, individuals who are continuously covered for a specified period of time may not be denied access to insurance because of pre-existing conditions. And individuals should be allowed to purchase insurance across state lines, free from costly state benefit requirements. Finally, individuals and small businesses should be allowed to form purchasing pools to lower insurance costs and improve choice.

Step 4: Reform medical liability. We should cap non-economic damages in medical malpractice litigation. The federal government would also provide innovation grants to states for reforms, such as alternative dispute resolution or health care courts.

Step 5: Make health care more like a consumer market and less like a government program. This can be done by strengthening health savings accounts that help consumers save for health expenses and choose cost-effective insurance. For example, we should eliminate the minimum deductible requirement for HSAs. The market reforms I am proposing will drive down costs, better inform consumers and improve the quality of health care in our nation.”



Healthcare Policy - May 2011




'08 Healthcare plan for Nation



Analysis of Mitt Romney's Social Security and Medicare Reform Plan:

“Romney delivered his most important speech yet. It was politically astute and substantively bold, ... Romney grasped the toughest issue — how to reform entitlements to avoid a fiscal catastrophe — and he sketched out a sophisticated way to address it.

“The speech was built around the theme that government should be simpler, smarter and smaller. First, he established his bona fides. Romney reminded his listeners that when he went to work at the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, he inherited a $370 million deficit. He left behind a $100 million surplus that went into an endowment fund.

“Then he argued that over the decades government has become bloated and lethargic. In World War II, the Navy commissioned 1,000 ships a year and had 1,000 employees in the purchasing department. Today, Romney said, we commission nine ships a year but have 24,000 employees in the department.

“Romney then laid out a measured fiscal strategy, starting with a promise to bring federal spending down to 20 percent of gross domestic product, which is about the precrisis average. He then turned to entitlements...

“The experts were impressed. The Romney campaign operates like a smooth-running White House, with a process to identify the core issues, cull ideas and present options to the candidate.

“In his speech, Romney proposed some sensible Social Security reforms: gradually raise the retirement age and slow the growth of benefits for richer retirees. His Medicare plan is more radical because the problems are more fundamental.

“Medicare’s central problem is that it institutionalizes the fee-for-service payment system, which rewards providers for the quantity of services provided, regardless of quality, outcome or cost...

“True Medicare reform replaces the fee-for-service system with premium support. Government gives people money, rising slowly over time, to shop around for their own private insurance plans. The system would reward efficiency and quality, not just quantity. Competition between providers would unleash a wave of innovation.

“Romney proposed keeping Medicare just as it is for everybody currently in or close to the system. But he would slowly introduce a premium support system, with less-affluent beneficiaries receiving more support than more-affluent ones.

“Many reporters claimed that the Romney approach is similar to the Paul Ryan plan. It’s actually closer to the plan that Pete Domenici, a former Republican senator, and Alice Rivlin, a former Clinton budget chief, devised. Romney would create a premium support system, but he would also give seniors the option of a government-run insurance plan that works a lot like the current fee-for-service Medicare.

“This is politically smart... But it is also substantively smart...

“Romney is running in an atmosphere in which it is extremely difficult to remain serious and substantive. Yet he is doing it. Democrats should not underestimate him.”


Romney: Why I'd Repeal ObamaCare

“Friday is the second anniversary of ObamaCare. It is past time to abolish the program, root and branch. The Supreme Court will soon have a crack at this; arguments about the program's constitutionality open before it next week. But whatever the justices decide in what is certain to be a landmark decision, the case against ObamaCare extends far beyond questions about its constitutionality. President Obama's program is an unfolding disaster for the American economy, a budget-busting entitlement, and a dramatic new federal intrusion into our lives.

“It is precisely for those reasons that I've opposed a one-size-fits-all health care plan for the entire nation. What we need is a free market, federalist approach to making quality, affordable health insurance available to every American. Each state should be allowed to pursue its own solution in this regard, instead of being dictated to by Washington.

“But abolishing ObamaCare will only be half the battle. Just as important is the question of what to put in its place. Instead of the massive new taxes, trillions of dollars in new spending, and top-down bureaucratic decrees of ObamaCare, we need to limit Washington's control by spurring competition, creating maximum flexibility and enhancing consumer choice...

“The reforms I propose for the country could not be more different from Barack Obama's. They entail no new taxes, no massive diversions of funds away from Medicare, no tax discrimination, and no new bureaucracies. At the same time, they increase consumer choice, lower health care costs, decrease government spending, and give states responsibility for dealing with the uninsured. Whatever the Supreme Court decides about the constitutionality of ObamaCare, we already know that it is bad policy and wrong for America. Abolishing it and putting sensible changes in its place will be one of my highest priorities as president.”

More details of Romney's own vision for healthcare:

Mitt Romney Healthcare Speech - Metairie, LA:


Compare Romney's approach above with Obama's ACA (Obamacare)

Obamacare is going to make insurance premiums rise for people.

People with high-deductable insurance plans are being told they may see rates triple, due to ACA's (Affordable Care Act's) requirement for lower deductibles and many newly required coverages. Many people are starting to see their insurance premiums rise more than normal as insurance companies gear up to be in full compliance with Obamacare in January 2014.

This is diferent from what Obama is saying (e.g. “Your premiums will go down.” — Pres. Obama in Cincinnati, OH on July 26, 2012

(Or his bigger statement that "It's a plan that will cover every American and cut the cost of a typical family's premiums by $2500 a year." — Barack Obama, Sep 3, 2007)

(Or his stating he will do it by the end of his first term: "We’ll lower premiums by up to $2,500 for a typical family per year... We’ll do it by the end of my first term as President of the United States.") — Barack Obama, Jun 5, 2008 (4th to last paragraph in speech)

This is also different from Romney's Massachusetts healthcare plan (a.k.a. Romneycare), where insurance premiums really did drop.

MORE DIFFERENCES »


Romney made some edits between his hardback book "NO APOLOGY: The Case for American Greatness" and his paperback edition "NO APOLOGY: Believe in America."

On page 177 of both books he stated:

"My own preference would be to let each state fashion its own program to meet the distinct needs of its citizens...

"We made it possible for each newly insured person to have better care, and ultimately healthier and longer lives... It's portable, affordable health insurance-- something people have been talking about for decades."

Immediately after that last sentence the hardback version had:

"We can accomplish the same thing for everyone in the country, and it can be done without letting government take over health care."

The paperback version had:

"And it was done without government taking over health care."

The message in both editions is consistent with his national plan as stated above, and neither calls for Massachusetts' plan to be implemented nationwide. The hardback version more explicitly suggests that better care and affordable insurance is possible throughout the country. In otherwords, in the following debate exchange, Gov. Perry got it wrong and Gov. Romney got it right:

PERRY:  “As a matter of fact, between books, your hard copy book, you said it was exactly what the American people needed, to have that Romneycare given to them as you had in Massachusetts. Then in your paperback, you took that line out...”

ROMNEY: “I actually wrote my book, and in my book I said no such thing. What I said, actually -- when I put my health care plan together -- and I met with Dan Balz, for instance, of The Washington Post. He said, "Is this is a plan that if you were president you would put on the whole nation, have a whole nation adopt it?"

“I said, "Absolutely not." I said, "This is a state plan for a state, it is not a national plan." ”

What Mitt Romney said on a national Mandate in 2008 and in his book, and more on his national healthcare views:

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