Monday, September 10, 2012

I am not disappointing with Governor Romney's position on pre-existing conditions.

 By Grace-Marie Turner, September 10, 2012, National Review Online

Some conservatives are aghast that Mitt Romney told NBC’s Meet the Press that there are some health reforms he would support.

“I’m not getting rid of all of health-care reform,” Mr. Romney said in an interview broadcast Sunday, sending conservatives into a fury. “Of course there are a number of things that I like in health-care reform that I’m going to put in place.” (link)

My Comment

I know already! Anyone who is not for repealing the whole thing is a RINO, a sell-out, or worse.  Many on the right would rather get nothing rather than half a loaf. Get real! As the author says, "Romney is right. There are problems in the health sector that need to be fixed, and we can’t stick our heads in the sand and pretend otherwise. If we fail to act, the health-reform battles will return with a vengeance."

The system we have now is not a free market health care system. It is a mixed system. With Medicare, Medicaid, and mandates that hospitals serve all who come regardless of ability to pay and then take a tax deduction for the loss, and restrictions requiring that new hospitals must show a community need before they can open, what we have is not a free market in health care at all. While I want to roll back the role of government in health care, we must tweak what we have as we strive to roll back government. This much is clear: The status quo is not acceptable.  Those who advocate the status quo are on the losing end of the argument.

Anyone who has ever paid $25 for a 2 cent aspirin or tried to understand a hospital bill will not buy the argument that everything is just fine and government should just stay out of healthcare.

I am  not disappointing with Governor Romney's position on  pre-existing conditions. I am no so happy with the position on "young people." At twenty-five, you have been able to drive for nine years, get married without your parents permission for nine years in many states, vote for seven years and drink for four years and have an abortion without your parent permission and enter into contracts. It is time to kick those "young people"  out of the nest. Nevertheless, if this can peal off a few Democratic voters, I am not going to nitpick it. 

While Romney makes these concession to Obmacare and public opinion, I wish he would hammer home a message that included the ability to purchase health care across state lines, informational technology improvements, tort reform and a health savings accounts.  Those issue are winners for our side. We need to articulate Republican reform while at the same time we accept those popular provisions of Democratic reform. 

A bold proposal that I think could be a winner, is to advocate transferring from the employer to the individual the tax advantage of the cost of an insurance premiums. How many people are chained to a job they hate because that is the only way then can get insurance?  Your employer should no more provide you with health insurance than they should provide you with homeowner's insurance or auto insurance or food or lodging. We should advocate ending the ability of the employer to exempt from his income the cost of insurance premiums and advocate transferring this deductability to the individual. While I know this position is not without risk and could distorted be by the other side,  I think on balance it would resonate with many and is a winning argument.

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