KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

In Florida, Obama Attacks Romney On Medicare Plan

Drawing on traditional Democratic campaign themes, President Barack Obama criticized GOP plans to transform Medicare into a "voucher program" and to repeal the 2010 health law.

The New York Times: Obama Visits Florida To Win Over Older Voters
After weeks of focusing on Mr. Romney's private-sector business deals, Mr. Obama turned to another front by attacking Republican plans to repeal his health care law and transform Medicare into a voucher program. Democrats have long used Medicare as an issue to galvanize older voters in Florida against Republicans (Baker and Gabriel, 7/19).

Miami Herald: As Thrill Fades, President Barack Obama Fires Up Supporters On Medicare, Tax Cuts
But Obama steered clear of attacks on Romney's business record and instead tailored his message toward seniors and the middle class on the first day of a two-day campaign swing in the nation's biggest battleground state. He stops in Fort Myers and Orlando on Friday. The president warned that Romney's proposal to repackage Medicare as a fixed benefit is a "voucher" system "will end Medicare as we know it" as it forces seniors to purchase private health insurance. He said his health care reforms have helped seniors receive discounted prescription drugs and get access to free preventive care (Klas and Caputo, 7/19).

Los Angeles Times: In Florida, Obama Attacks Romney Over Medicare
President Obama broadened his attack on Mitt Romney on Thursday, using Medicare to draw a sharper contrast on key issues in this swing state. With an eye on seniors, Obama warned that Romney would undermine their federal healthcare entitlement program. In a speech after the early-bird dinner at a retirement community, he linked the program's fate to Romney's position on taxes, building on his campaign's assertion that Romney would "end Medicare as we know it to help pay for his tax cuts for the wealthiest" (Memoli and Mehta, 7/20).

The Associated Press: Obama, Romney Tangle On Health Care, Jobs
President Barack Obama is warning Florida retirees that Republican challenger Mitt Romney would undercut the new health care law and alter Medicare, a play for voters in one of the nation's top swing states. Obama wraps up a two-day trip to Florida on Friday with stops in Fort Myers and suburban Orlando, where he is pressing the case that retirees would be hurt by Romney's opposition to the health care law and by Republican-led efforts to turn Medicare into a "voucher program” (Thomas, 7/20).

The Wall Street Journal: Florida Poses New Worry For Obama
President Barack Obama revived his attack Thursday on Republican plans to overhaul Medicare, as he opened a two-day swing through Florida, a state he won in 2008 but which his aides say is now more of a challenge. The sour economy and housing market are creating problems for Mr. Obama in the state (Lee and Campo-Flores, 7/19).

Bloomberg: Obama Appeals for Votes In Florida By Hitting Romney On Medicare
President Barack Obama took aim at Mitt Romney on taxes and Medicare in making an appeal to voters in Florida, the biggest swing state prize, while the Republican candidate pressed his case that Obama is hostile to business. Obama yesterday began a two-day trip through Florida, twinning criticism of Romney's support for tax cuts to benefit the top earners with a warning that the Republican’s proposals would force those 65 and older to pay more for health care (Brower, 7/20).

ABC News: President Obama In Florida: Mitt Romney's Medicare Plan Leaves Seniors 'Out Of Luck'
President Obama slammed Mitt Romney's Medicare plan today, telling seniors in the battleground state of Florida that his rival's proposal would force them to fend for themselves and hurt them financially. "He plans to turn Medicare into a voucher program," the president told a rowdy crowd at Century Village. … The president is hammering his opponent's plan during his two-day tour of the Sunshine State, where seniors make up roughly 17 percent of the population (Bruce and Dwyer, 7/19).

CBS News: Obama Kicks Off Fla. Visit By Criticizing Romney On Medicare
Making his 19th visit to Florida since taking office and his 7th visit this year, the president used his kick-off speech to reach out to the politically significant population of senior citizens. He said Mitt Romney threatens their Medicare coverage by advocating it be turned into a voucher program. "If that voucher isn't worth enough to buy health insurance that's on the market - you're out of luck," said the president, eliciting groans and boos from the audience (Knoller, 7/19).

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