KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

As Voters Weigh Candidates, Romney Seeks Support From Intra-Party Rivals

Although President Barack Obama and GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney offer voters "a distinct choice," Romney is still courting conservatives within his party who have been concerned about his past positions on things such as abortion and health reform.

The Associated Press: On Taxes, Health Care And Government's Role, Obama And Romney Offer Distinct Choices To Voters
Those differences surely exist. Obama and his Republican challenger are offering voters a distinct choice on taxes, a sharp disagreement over health care and a classic ideological divide on social issues that neither candidate seems eager to talk about (5/1).

The Associated Press: Santorum Wants Promises From Romney Before Backing
[Romney] signed a health care overhaul as governor that provided the groundwork for Democrats' national law that requires all Americans to buy insurance or face a fine. Romney's health care overhaul in Massachusetts required health care coverage. That's the primary issue Santorum plans to discuss Friday when he meets privately with Romney. "We want to make sure he doesn't replace it with any kind of mandate," Santorum adviser Hogan Gidley said (Elliott, 5/1).

At the state level, reports on Wisconsin's recall election and a new GOP ad in the special election to replace Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz. -

Chicago Tribune: Wisconsin's Walker Raises $13 Million For Recall Election
Walker enraged Democrats and unions representing government workers such as teachers when he pushed through the legislature last spring a measure drastically reducing their powers. The law forced them to pay a portion of the cost of health insurance and pensions, capped wage increases, and required unions to be recertified every year. … The first-term governor, who faces the expensive special election in June, raised that amount between January 17 and April 23, according to a finance report filed with the state (O'Brien, 4/30).

Roll Call: Arizona: NRCC Releases Ad Slamming Barber
The National Republican Congressional Committee upped its ante behind a new ad it is airing in the special election to replace former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D). Previously, the NRCC was putting $150,000 behind the ad buy. The group has since doubled that figure to $300,000. The buy will include broadcast television. It is a negative ad hitting the Democratic nominee, former Giffords staffer Ron Barber, on health care. ... the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, went up with a $150,000 ad buy of its own last week. Much like the NRCC, the Democrats ignore their own candidate and criticize the GOP nominee, veteran Jesse Kelly, on nationalized issues: Social Security, Medicare and lower taxes for the wealthy (Livingston, 4/30).

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