Thursday, April 7, 2011

Romneycare and the Politics of States Rights- The Politicizer

Arguably the highest profile GOP Presidential candidate to not have announced his intention to seek the Republican nomination in 2012 is former Governor Mitt Romney. Early polling from the democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling indicates that Romney is leading in the early states among most groups likely to make up the primary electorate, with the notable exception of “very conservative” voters. This trend is problematic for Romney because the primary voters he is courting tend to come from the most conservative sectors of the party. One of the biggest liabilities for Governor Romney with conservative voters is the healthcare reform package he ushered through the Massachusetts State House. The plan, endorsed by Romney, contains an individual mandate similar to the mandate included in President Obama’s healthcare reform package. This provision requires all Massachusetts residents to purchase healthcare insurance from a variety of plans approved by state regulators but provided through private insurers. Those who cannot afford a plan are able to receive treatment at any hospital in Massachusetts, however if it is determined (via tax information) that someone could afford a plan they are ascribed a tax penalty.

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