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Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

How many people will RomneyCare leave hanging?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (26783points) October 5th, 2012

In the debate Gov Romney said he would let each state craft their own insurance program to get everyone covered. That sounds good, but if each state did there own thing how many people would be left in the cold? If in New Mexico you were able to have a preexisting condition and still get coverage but then had to move to Colorado and they did not insure people with preexisting conditions, would that mean you’d have to pass on the job or go without insurance? What if you were traveling to Oregon and your insurance was from your home state of Nebraska which treated a particular ailment that Oregon did not recognize as an ailment; would you still be able to be treated and covered for that treatment or get a hefty bill for it? If the government has to write guidelines for the state to follow to keep it all even and consistent anyhow, how does that different from ObamaCare?

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26 Answers

tedd's avatar

Quite frankly, I suspect Mittens has no plan. When pressed for details he never has any, just says he doesn’t like Obamacare except of course for the popular parts of it.

Mittens is running on the tried and failed method of not being the other guy. (see John Kerry 04)

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

@tedd Mittens is running on the tried and failed method of not being the other guy. (see John Kerry 04) I think Michael Dukakis was the “poster boy” for that.

elbanditoroso's avatar

They won’t end up hanging.

Either they will die of starvation or of untreated diseases.

Qingu's avatar

Romney’s plan, iirc, says that pre-existing conditions will be covered if you are on an employer’s insurance. So if you don’t have insurance through your employer you’re shit out of luck. And if you’ve been unemployed for a while you’re shit out of luck.

And this plan is ad hoc BS in the first place; he made it up out of thin air to counter talking points against him.

If you believe what Romney has said at the debate, that “principles matter more than specifics,” then… well, then it’s pretty confusing. Because as gov of MA Romney’s principles seemed to indicate that pre-existing conditions should be covered and universal coverage was good. But ever since then he’s been parroting the right-wing line that the free market should handle it. And then at the debate he simply lied through his teeth when asserting that these people will be covered under his plan.

So who knows what will happen if he gets elected. Probably whatever is most convenient for the industries who influence such things.

wonderingwhy's avatar

I’ll leave it up to the states sounds an awful lot like “I don’t know so I’ll let others figure it out” followed quickly with “and take credit for my hand’s off approach and guidance if it works and unabashedly blame them for their failures and negative press if it doesn’t”. The idea of competition to develop a leading strategy or set of best practices isn’t necessarily a bad one but so far I really haven’t heard any structure or leadership in directing that competition, just “the market will figure it out”.

The point of all that to your questions being, I don’t know and I don’t think Mitt does either. After all if he’s going to leave it to the states and not explain how he’s going to regulate it, them, or the process any guess as to who’s going to freeze and why is as good as any other.

As to the guidelines, who knows what Mitt’ll do. I suspect he’d do something more tenuous issuing them true guidelines rather than rules (rules leaning too closely to Obamacare for Mitt to separate himself from it) allowing greater freedom to the states in setting rules and deciding the specifics. Interestingly none of what I’ve heard from Mitt directly addresses cost even though they keep harping on it, I could certainly be forgetting something though.

wundayatta's avatar

Oh lets’ see. We had what? 47 million uninsured before Obamacare? So Romneycare would give us at least that. If he forces insurers to cover preexisting conditions without providing any savings and any additional funding, then the price of insurance will go up, and fewer people will choose to purchase it.

My guess is that we’d see the number of uninsured top 55 million within two years after Romney entered office, assuming he was able to overturn Obamacare. Actually, since his policies would put the economy into a tailspin, let me guess that at least 60 million would be uninsured by 2014. There would be a mass change in Congress, and Romney would be facing an overwhelming Democratic majority in both houses of Congress.

Maybe he’d be a good negotiator like he said, and introduce his own version of health care reform—Romneycare, which would look a lot like Massachusetts. Of course, states would have a choice about whether to implement it. They could get billions of dollars if they choose to implement it, and none if they didn’t. Yep. That’s states’ choice, all right.

marinelife's avatar

Everyone with a pre-existing condition.

rojo's avatar


I know the answer to this one!!!!


KNOWITALL's avatar

Romney worked to promote flexibility; Obama and the Democrats imposed uniformity.

While Romney worked to limit mandates in Massachusetts health care, Obama and a Democratic Congress threw into the Affordable Care Act a host of goodies — such as an end to co-payments for “preventive care.” Employers now will have to pay for services for which workers used to chip in.

This administration has refined passing the hat. With Congress, the president enacted mandates — “free” birth control, adult children can stay on their parents’ insurance plans up to age 26 — for which Washington pols do not have to pay. The private sector pays.

They don’t even have to pretend that Congress will have to pay in the future.

“If you’ve got health insurance,” Obama said of his plan, “it doesn’t mean a government takeover.”

It’s a government takeover without government responsibility for the bill.

Early in the debate, Romney quipped that Obama seems to have levied an “economy tax.” Well put. What employer wants to hire new workers when that employer knows Washington pols are confident they can add new mandates to the package at no cost to themselves?

Now that everyone knows that Washington can find services dear to politically important groups of voters, and make other people pay for them, there is no controlling health care costs.

Read more:

Linda_Owl's avatar

Romney’s “plan” will leave anyone who cannot afford medical care, hanging or starving or dying of treatable diseases…. and this will include those of us who are on Soc.Sec. & Medicare.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

So what is Obamacare, and why is my son and granddaughter still without medical insurance? I thought it was a government “affordable” medical insurance plan that people could get. If so, where is it and how do you get it?

tedd's avatar

@KNOWITALL Food for thought, in the two years since Obamacare was signed into law healthcare costs have risen at 1% or less. That’s opposed to the 5–13% for every year going back several decades.

And most of the mandates have unforeseen benefits. Several studies recently concluded that free birth control significantly lowers the number of abortions in an area, a much more costly and controversial procedure.

@Skaggfacemutt If your son or grand daughter is young enough they can go on their parents insurance. There are also high risk pools already in action, meant for very sick people who have no insurance. The bulk of the plan, the vouchers to buy insurance and the pools of companies to buy from, don’t go into place until 2014.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

OH OH OH OH I know the answer !

Raises hand

47 percent.

wundayatta's avatar

@tedd Birth control access leading to fewer abortions is not an unforeseen benefit. And some of us even including the savings in our economic analyses of the reform packages. It’s not the same as preventable hospitalizations, but it’s the same principle. It’s just hard to know exactly what kind of savings you will see as a result of improved access to primary care.

When I used to do these analyses, we found that you could generally increase health services by around 25%, but save about 3% over current spending if you used a single payer system.

Obamacare is far from single payer, but it should benefit from some of the same sources of savings. It will not have the same administrative savings, unfortunately, which means it is leaving all kinds of savings on the table. Or rather, giving excess profits to insurers.

Romney wants to make those profits even bigger, for no benefit at all.

tedd's avatar

@wundayatta Well to those who see the obvious it’s not an unforeseen benefit. But there had been much debate about it in political circles.

wundayatta's avatar

Politicians tend to be ideologically driven. When one party doesn’t believe in science or facts, it’s going to be hard for them to make good predictions about the future.

Qingu's avatar

@KNOWITALL, “While Romney worked to limit mandates in Massachusetts health care,”


Mitt Romney in 2006: “With regards to the individual mandate, the individual responsibility program that I proposed, I was very pleased that the compromise between the two houses includes the personal responsibility mandate. ... (It) is essential for bringing the health care costs down for everyone and getting everyone the health insurance they need.”

“They don’t even have to pretend that Congress will have to pay in the future.”

What are you talking about? ACA is paid for. It actually reduces the deficit. It is funded by tax increases on “premium” insurance plans and other targeted taxes.

Seriously, almost nothing you said has any basis in fact. You also cited a right-wing opinion column. Have you considered that maybe the sources for your political views are misleading you?

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

@tedd My son is too old to go on my insurance. My granddaughter’s dad does not have insurance, and her mother can’t afford to put her on her insurance. The cost to add her would be as much as a car payment.

bookish1's avatar

Dude, I am so freaking tired of living in fear of being tarred with a “pre-existing condition” if I change employers or lose my job.
Just one of the kinds of diabetes prescriptions I need to stay alive would apparently cost me about $650 for a three month supply. I know this because my pharmacist forgot to run through my insurance yesterday, and that was the out of pocket cost. Nearly gave me a heart attack. Thank God I have insurance for the time being…
I should have known better than to contract an illness at the age of 4 that was meant to kill me off for the good of the gene pool!~

tedd's avatar

@Skaggfacemutt Well then there are two possible ways Obamacare helps them. If they are sick right now, there are government funded “emergency” pools that can fund their medical care. A friend of mine had melanoma a few years ago. At first she had no insurance, and then under Obamacare she was covered under her parents for some time. After that she fell into this emergency fund… (she’s cancer free now thank god).

If they’re not sick, then Obamacare won’t help them at all until 2014 when the full plan is initiated. At that time the government will essentially give them a voucher to go out and buy insurance from a privately run company. In the mean time though, unfortunately, they’re at the mercy of the healthcare “system” that Obamacare has yet to fully replace.

wonderingwhy's avatar

@KNOWITALL So here’s the thing if Romney want’s to get rid of the individual mandate yet keep coverage for pre-existing conditions how does he propose to pay for that?

Encouraging preventative care by ending insured co-pays hopes to bring down costs by early discovery and treatment. This is a win for everyone. Birth control equals fewer abortions, unwanted pregnancies, and unwanted children. Again win for everyone.

These are steps in the direction of saying “everyone deserves basic healthcare regardless of their financial situation” it also forces insurers to cover pre-existing conditions without robbing the patient. I consider both those long over due steps in the right direction.

Neither of side is addressing, head on, the real costs of health care but the idea that he can scrap Obamacare and somehow reduce and shift the costs around in a free market while affordably insuring everyone without mandates is difficult to swallow.

Skaggfacemutt's avatar

@tedd Thank you for that information. I really needed it. I will keep in mind that if something happens, to ask about the emergency fund for them. Otherwise, we will just wait until 2014 and then hopefully get them some insurance.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Sorry all, had to work, not going to argue since it’s friday and I’m heading out. Catch ya next week though, same time same place!

bkcunningham's avatar

@tedd, how will the voucher work? What are the income requirements and what type of insurance will you get?

Qingu's avatar

@bkcunningham I’m pretty sure we covered the subsidies in another question.

tedd's avatar

@bkcunningham To be honest I don’t know all the details of it. I know they’re not likely to call it a voucher, as that rings too Republican (irony abounds). I do not know what (if any) income requirements there will be. I could pretty much guarantee the poor and middle classes will be eligible for the voucher, I suspect everyone will be.

You will be able to choose from a pool of government approved insurance plans from approved companies. And I know that rings of government picking the winners or picking crappy plans, but basically every major insurance company (Cigna, Blue Cross/Blue Shield/ Etna/etc) has at least one plan approved. These pools I believe will vary by state. It was supposed to be up to every state to set up their own pool, but surprise surprise several Republican controlled states are taking their toys home… so the duty fell to the Federal Government.

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