Monday, September 10, 2012

What's missing from Romney pander on health care

Posted By on Mon, Sep 10, 2012 at 6:09 AM

THERE HE GOES AGAIN: Tall talk from Mitt Romney on Meet the Press
  • THERE HE GOES AGAIN: Tall talk from Mitt Romney on Meet the Press
Mitt Romney proclaimed yesterday that he'd toss the bad parts of President Obama's health care reform law and keep the good. Easy to say. Impossible to do.

Kevin Drum explained long ago a core problem in merely ending the insurance company ban on coverage of people with pre-existing conditions. Drum wrote then that Obama hoped to maneuver Republicans into precisely this position.

For Obama, this is the ballgame. My guess is that he wants to maneuver Republicans into either (a) admitting that they're unwilling to regulate this, which would be highly unpopular, or (b) admitting, however grudgingly, that the practice needs to be banned. Because if they admit it has to be banned he can make the following argument:

If insurance companies are forced to take on all comers, then people can game the system by buying insurance only when they get sick. This would obviously decimate the private insurance industry.

So you have to require everyone to buy insurance at all times. It's the only way to have a broad pool that keeps costs down (another frequent Obama talking point.)

But obviously you can't force poor people to buy insurance they flatly can't afford. So if you mandate coverage, then you have to subsidize low-income families that can't afford insurance, and you have to provide incentives for small businesses so that they can cover their employees.

And if you do that, you have to have a funding source. Preferably one that also helps rein in premium costs. Like, oh, an excise tax.

Romney's magic wand and Paul Ryan's amazing secret plan, to be revealed only AFTER the election, are only so much more snake oil.

Oh, and by the way, Romney really hasn't changed anything about his position on health care. If you already have insurance, you're OK. Otherwise ....

UPDATE: Romney's pre-existing condition coverage would OMIT 89 million Americans. No rich ones, you may be sure.

Romney's tax plan is similarly problematic.

Tags: , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Speaking of...

Comments (16)

Showing 1-16 of 16

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-16 of 16

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • State Police issues statement on Jason Rapert 'threats'

    The State Police have issued a minor clarification in what appears to be an effort to soothe an enraged Sen. Jason Rapert, exposed here as overly excited about both a Conway parking lot question from a constituent as well as some inflammatory Internet rhetoric that he's interpreted as a dire threat on his life. State cops took his reports seriously, they say. But in the end, they found nothing actionable.
    • Sep 15, 2015
  • Democrats name new House minority leader

    Rep. Michael John Gray of Augusta has been elected leader of the House Democratic Caucus, the minority party. He succeeds Rep. Eddie Armstrong of North Little Rock. He's a farmer and small business owner.
    • Sep 25, 2015
  • 'How to decimate a city' — a big freeway

    Reporting from around the U.S. continues to illustrate the folly of the Arkansas highway department and construction boosters like the chamber of commerce and Vice Mayor Lance Hines in advocating ever wider freeways through the heart of Little Rock. Syracuse, N.Y., is looking for a better way in a debate remarkably similar to the debate about widening Interstate 30 in Little Rock.
    • Nov 20, 2015

Most Shared

  • Former state board of education chair Sam Ledbetter weighs in on Little Rock millage vote

    Ledbetter, the former state Board of Education chair who cast the decisive vote in 2015 to take over the LRSD, writes that Education Commissioner Johnny Key "has shown time and again that he is out of touch with our community and the needs of the district." However, Ledbetter supports the May 9 vote as a positive for the district's students and staff.

Visit Arkansas

Haralson, Smith named to Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame

Haralson, Smith named to Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame

Chuck Haralson and Ken Smith were inducted into the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame during the 43rd annual Governor’s Conference on Tourism

Most Viewed

  • Griffen asks probe of Ark. Supreme Court and AG's office conduct

    At a press conference today at the Doubletree Hotel just across from the Pulaski County Courthouse, Pulaski County Fifth Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen and his attorneys announced that he has asked the Arkansas Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission to investigate the conduct of the entire Arkansas Supreme Court, and asked the director of the Arkansas Committee on Professional Conduct to investigate the conduct of Attorney General Leslie Rutledge and several others in the AG's office, related to what Griffen and his attorneys claim were forbidden ex parte conversations between the Supreme Court and the AG's office.
  • Death watch includes a family reunion, arranged by a victim's family

    The execution of Kenneth Williams for his 1999 slaying of Cecil Boren during a prison escape remains scheduled for 7 p.m. tonight, though actions in state and federal courts are anticipated in the final hours.
  • Can the Marijuana Commission receive paid travel?

    An official opinion from Attorney General Leslie Rutledge touches lightly on the many ways in which the medical marijuana amendment creates new legal concerns.
  • Arkansas Medicaid 'savings' will produce some losers

    The state offers an optimistic outlook on Gov. Asa Hutchinson's plans to reduce the number covered by the state's expanded Medicaid health coverage. There's reason for questions.
  • New complaint filed in Kenneth Williams case

    Lawyers for Kenneth Williams filed a new lawsuit this morning in Pulaski Circuit Court claiming that his execution tonight would cause unconstitutional cruel or unusual punishment.

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

Slideshows

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation