Medicare, Health Overhaul Playing Key Role On The Campaign Trail
The Associated Press offers an issue breakdown regarding the health law positions taken by President Barack Obama and GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney while The Washington Post examines new studies that detail how Romney's Medicare proposals might impact seniors.
The Associated Press/Washington Post: Why It Matters: You'll Feel It Whether That Health Care Law Stays Or Goes
The issue: America's health care system is unsustainable. It's not one problem, but three combined: high cost, uneven quality and millions uninsured. Major changes will keep coming. Every family will be affected. Where they stand: President Barack Obama's health care law will extend coverage to 30 million uninsured and keep the basic design of Medicare and Medicaid the same. It's not clear how well his approach will control costs for taxpayers, families and businesses. Mitt Romney would repeal Obama's health care overhaul; what parts he'd replace have yet to be spelled out. Romney would revamp Medicare, nudging future retirees toward private insurance plans, and he would turn Medicaid over to the states (9/17).
The Washington Post: Romney's Health Plans Would Affect Seniors' Care, Studies Find
It has been a central campaign promise from Mitt Romney: His Medicare overhaul plan would not touch benefits for anyone older than 55. That may not, however, be the case with the Republican presidential nominee's other health-care proposals. A growing body of research suggests that his plans to repeal the Affordable Care Act and cut Medicaid funding would have a direct impact on the health care that seniors receive (Kliff, 9/16).
The New York Times: Challenged On Medicare, GOP Loses Ground
Maria Rubin is one of the coveted independent voters in this swing state — so independent that she will not say whether she is voting for President Obama or Mitt Romney. She does share her age (63) and, more quickly, her opinion on Medicare: "I'm not in favor of changing it, or eliminating it" (Calmes, 9/15).
The Hill: Voters Give Obama Edge On Health Care
Voters may not love "ObamaCare," but they still prefer President Obama to Mitt Romney on healthcare issues. Several recent polls show Obama with an advantage — often a sizeable one — when voters are asked which candidate would do a better job handling healthcare. Obama held that lead even before Romney selected Paul Ryan as his running mate, which elevated the debate over Ryan's controversial Medicare plan. Yet polling also shows that the public is deeply divided, and leans negative, on Obama's signature healthcare law (Baker, 9/16).
Minnesota Post: What Obama, Romney Preexisting Condition Plans Mean For Minnesotans
Until the Election Day dust settles, the future for Americans with both a preexisting condition and a gap in insurance is in limbo. The state Department of Health found that 690,000 Minnesotans went some period of time without insurance in 2011. The number has some important caveats (we don’t know why they went without insurance, for how long, or, most importantly, whether they had an otherwise disqualifying condition), but under Romney's proposal, individuals in that pool could be shut out of individual market insurance coverage if they ... have a preexisting condition (Henry, 9/17).
Los Angeles Times: Romney's New Focus: Pushing A Five-Point Economic Plan
Romney's campaign speeches now center on his five-point economic plan that, he says, will create 12 million jobs over the next four years. (The current plan boils down Romney's 59-point primary season proposal on jobs and the economy). ... Champion small business by cutting taxes and regulations, and by overturning Obamacare. "We need small business to grow. ... Small businesses have been crushed these past four years" (Landsberg, 9/15).
Politico: Obama 'Fear' Driving Social Conservatives
Fear of a second Obama administration was a centerpiece at [the Value Voters conference] ... Conservatives attending the conference said they worried about a range of things during a possible Obama II, from implementation of the president's health care law, and a move to what they saw as more "socialist" policies to the end of the very values — including the protection of life and traditional marriage — that they came to the summit to support. ... (Republican vice presidential nominee Paul) Ryan addressed the summit on Friday and bashed the Obama administration for its proposed ruling earlier this year, ordering Catholic hospitals and schools to deliver birth control as part of his health care reform plan. (Schultheis, 9/16).