GOP Presidential Debates Touch On Various Health Care Issues
News outlets offer analysis and fact-checking after the weekend's two GOP debates. Some coverage looks ahead to South Carolina, and even further into the future.
National Journal: Obamacare, Romneycare, Obamneycare—Never Mind
To think that Tim Pawlenty's campaign went into a death spiral because he refused to confront Mitt Romney on "Obamneycare." Now that Michele Bachmann is gone, practically the only person who mentions Obamacare is Romney. And he doesn't do it much. He might not even need to do it at all. There were plenty of TV ads denouncing Obamacare during Sunday's NBC News/Facebook debate, including one from 2008 contender Mike Huckabee. But it's not like Romney's five remaining rivals are jumping all over him for enacting the template for the Affordable Care Act so reviled by conservatives (Lawrence, 1/8).
The Hill: Ron Paul Says Corporate Medicine Not Much Better Than Socialized Medicine
Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul (Texas) said the current healthcare system is overly corporate and not much better than a socialized healthcare system during a town hall in Meredith, New Hampshire on Sunday (Nagesh, 1/8).
Boston Globe: Fact-Checking Romney Health Plan, Abortion
Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich Thursday night criticized former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney because his health reform law called for the use of taxpayer money to fund abortions. "I am for right to life; Romney-care includes tax-paid abortions,"’ Gingrich said at a town hall in Lancaster, N.H. The statement is correct as far as it goes, but the impression it might have created - that Massachusetts taxpayers did not subsidize abortions before Romney’s health reform law of 2006 - is not correct (MacGillis, 1/7).
The Associated Press: Fact Check: Promising Gain Without Pain
Executing a classic Washington dodge, Newt Gingrich told Americans that Medicare and Medicaid could be kept solid merely by ending fraud in the system, a promise of gain without pain that ignores the aging population and other great forces pressing on the programs (Woodward, 1/8).
McClatchy / The State (Columbia, S.C.): Santorum's S.C. Campaign Gets Boost From BlueCross BlueShield Execs
Rick Santorum’s S.C. base — at least financially speaking — is BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, located in northeast Richland County. The former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania, who is getting a second look by many after his virtual tie with GOP presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney in the Iowa caucuses, had raised $80,080 from S.C. donors as of the end of 2011’s third quarter (Smith, 1/6).
Politico Pro: HHS Could Be Key Post Under GOP President
The HHS secretary is poised to become one of the most high-profile and political posts next year if a Republican wins the White House. The job could catapult the career of a politician able to say he or she helped take down "Obamacare." But there's also a risk that whoever lands the position won't be able to meet such high expectations (Haberkorn, 1/9).
Kaiser Health News: We Watch The Debates So You Don't Have To (Video Clips)
KHN boils down the weekend's GOP presidential debate marathon to just the discussions of health care issues, including Medicare, premium support and contraception.