KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Anniversary Of Mass. Health Law Puts Romney In The Hot Seat

Politics swirled around events designed to mark the sixth anniversary of the state's health reforms -- with a focus on GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, who signed the measure when he was governor and is now campaigning against the federal health law, which includes many similar provisions.  

The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire: Romney Faces Heat On Birthday Of Massachusetts Health Law
The state's Democratic governor on Wednesday celebrated the sixth birthday of the Massachusetts health-care law — and took some jabs at its creator, Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney. The ceremony at historic Faneuil Hall was in the spot where Mr. Romney signed the legislation into law in April 2006 when he was governor of the state. He has promised to repeal the national version of the legislation. … Mr. Romney has said that he believes the federal requirement to do this is unconstitutional (Levitz and Radnofsky, 4/11).

The New York Times: Massachusetts Health Law Is Celebrated, With A Poke At Romney
Former Gov. Mitt Romney, needless to say, did not attend. But at a sixth-anniversary celebration of Massachusetts' landmark health care law on Wednesday, Gov. Deval Patrick, a Democrat, pointedly said his predecessor should be proud of the law, which has been a hot potato for Mr. Romney on the Republican presidential campaign trail (Goodnough, 4/11).

Politico: Romney's Health Care Law Gets Awkward Birthday Party
Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick marked the state's landmark health care reform law Wednesday with a ceremony at Faneuil Hall — the same place where Mitt Romney signed the bill almost six years ago, long before the state's reform became the model for the federal reform reviled by conservatives. The actual anniversary is Thursday (Millman, 4/11).

WBUR's CommonHealth blog: Faneuil Hall Celebration Of Mass. Health Reform Turning Six
But not everyone at the ceremony was willing to give Romney so much credit. Former Senate President Robert Travaglini said it was the Senate that pushed for reform. "Romney had the political skills and sense to realize that there was a potential victory here, and at the time, he was looking for victories as evidence of his success in a blue state," said Travaglini. Travaglini said Romney was not the driving force or even a leader in getting the Massachusetts health care law passed (Thys, 4/11). 

CNN: Obama Campaign Salutes Anniversary Of Romney's Health Care Law
Maybe you've heard the president's top aides call Mitt Romney the "godfather" of the Obama health care law? Now the Obama campaign is out with a web video that drives home the message. "I helped Gov. Romney develop his health care reform or Romneycare, before going down to Washington to help President Obama develop his national version of that law," says Jonathan Gruber a bright eyed MIT Health Consultant featured prominently in the video. The spot includes old footage of Romney thanking Gruber for his work on the Massachusetts health bill. Gruber's verdict: "The core of the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare and what we did in Massachusetts are identical" (4/12).

ABC: On 'RomneyCare' Birthday Video Traces Ties To 'ObamaCare'
The Obama campaign is marking the six-year anniversary of Mitt Romney's Massachusetts health care law with a new mini-documentary that traces its path from "model for the nation" to Republicans' enemy number one. The three-minute video features key figures who helped craft "Romneycare" and appeared in public with then-Gov. Romney as he heralded passage of the landmark law in 2006 (Dwyer, 4/12).

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