KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Romney: Federal Health Reform Worse Than Mass. Plan

News outlets covered a major political speech by former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney on Saturday.

The Associated Press: "Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney on Saturday derided President Barack Obama's health care law - modeled in some ways after one the ex-governor signed in Massachusetts - as a misguided and egregious effort to seize more power for Washington" (Sidoti, 3/6).

Politico: Even though an individual mandate requiring coverage is the hallmark of both the Massachusetts law and the president's plan - what critics respectively have dubbed "Romneycare" and "Obamacare" - Romney sought to draw a distinction between the two ...  'Our approach was a state plan intended to address problems that were in many ways unique to Massachusetts,' he said.' .... The Obama White House and its Democratic allies have made mischief recently by saying their unpopular health law was partly inspired by Romney's in Massachusetts" (Hohmann, 3/5).

CBS News: "Romney also said he would repeal the health care bill passed by Congress.  'I would repeal Obamacare, if I were ever in a position to do so. My experience has taught me that states are where healthcare programs for the uninsured should be crafted, just as the Constitution provides. Obamacare is bad law, bad policy, and it is bad for America's families,' he said"  (3/5).

Boston Globe: "Romney's speech - before his most prominent public audience since he addressed the Conservative Political Action Conference last month in Washington - is the beginning of what is likely to become a relentless focus on the crucial primary battleground as Romney continues to lay the groundwork for an expected presidential bid" (Viser, 3/6).

Boston Herald: Romney "faces a steep climb in this live-free-or-die state, where the former Bay State governor's universal health-care law is a bitter pill to swallow for the surging Tea Party movement. 'Right now, it's ABR - Anyone But Romney,' said Kevin McHugh, 38, a Salem Tea Party activist who just started the Facebook page 'Mitt Romney and His Record' ... Wayne Semprini, a former state Republican Party chairman who ran Rudy Giuliani's campaign in New Hampshire in 2007 said, 'He's got Romneycare wrapped around his neck'" (Fargen, 3/6).

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