Romney vs. Obama: The Health Care Debate

Obama stands firm on his views that every American deserves the right to affordable and reliable health care and it’s up to the federal government to ensure that service is provided. For this reason, he fought for his Affordable Care Act – a 2,400 page bill that he’s worked to construct since taking office in 2008 – which passed this summer.

Obama’s view on health care is based on a believe that because of insurance companies’ unchecked power to “dictate care and cap and cancel your patients’ insurance,” tens of millions of Americans have been left uninsured and underinsured. In accordance with his new law, commonly referred to as “Obamacare,” the president believes the American people are moving toward a health care system that “broadly provides health security,” said Obama in a statement published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Under the new health care law (which will not take full effect until 2014), Americans who receive health insurance through their employer will only be affected in that it will make their coverage more affordable and secure. It also allows people with pre-existing conditions the ability to receive preventative care without paying deductibles or co-pays. Of the law Obama reports that “13 million Americans got more than $1 billion in rebates – and by 2019, economists believe, family premiums will be about $2,000 less.”

In addition, Obama claims the new law gets rid of insurance overpayments and waste and fraud in Medicare and Medicaid systems, which saved people an average of $600 in 2011. This move allowed Obama to extend health care coverage to 3 million young adults who would have otherwise been insured but now have coverage on their parents’ plan until they turn 26.

Mitt Romney, however, disagrees with the Affordable Care Act and has from day one. The first thing he has promised to do if elected president is to repeal the law.

“What the court did not do on its last day in session, I will do on my first day if elected president of the United States,” Romney said in a press conference immediately following the Affordable Care Act vote.

However, critics have been quick to point that Romney signed a similar law in Massachusetts that imposed fines on people who can afford health care but choose not to buy it. In response, Romney contends his views on health care vary from Obama’s not in the areas of the quality, availability or cost of care, but on who – the state or the federal government – gets to make the rules. Obama believes the decision should be left up to the federal government while Romney believes it should be left up to each state.

Romney would contend that Obamacare will take us in the opposite direction we need to go, saying, ” The costs are commensurate: Obamacare added a trillion dollars in new health care spending. To pay for it, the law raised taxes by $500 billion on everyone from middle-class families to innovative medical device makes, and then slashed $500 billion from Medicare,” according to his official website,

If Romney is elected president he has made clear that he intends to do to “fix” the wrongs Obama has made during his presidency. “In place of Obamacare, Mitt will pursue policies that give each state the power to craft a health care reform plan that is best for its own citizens. The federal government’s role will be to help the markets work by creating a level playing field for competition.”

Romney’s main points for health care include resorting state leadership and flexibility, promoting free markets and fair competition, and empowering consumer choice. Though he is essentially in support of universal health care, he wants its implementation delegated at a state level instead of federal.

Tomorrow night’s debate – slated to focus primarily on domestic policy – will take place from 9-10:30 p.m. ET at the University of Denver in Denver, Colorado. It will be broadcast live on C-SPAN, ABC, FOX, and NVC, as well as CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC.

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Patricia H.
Patricia H.6 years ago

let your voice be heard VOTE

Anne G.
Anne G6 years ago

The health system in the States is a mess and I am so glad I live elsewhere. I also cannot understand this fear of organised, state health care, no one should go broke if they get sick. If you don't want it, I'm sure there will always be a "Private" insurance for the Romneys of this world.

Tania Portillo
Tania Portillo6 years ago

Well obviously Mexico is a "third world" country. Yet, if someone gets sick, he/she gets medical attention. We actually have two government health programs or institutions, the "IMSS" which all paid workers must have by law, and the "Seguro Popular" (Popular Insurance) that works for all the people that don't have the "IMSS". Sure, services are poor, but medical consultations, lab analysis and overall care is free.

Fiona H.
Fiona H6 years ago

Living in the UK, I am constantly bemused by the vitriol poured onto the idea of a national healthcare system. In a so-called "civilized society", why should your ability to get healthcare be dependent on, at worst, your ability to pay (or being lucky enough to have good employee coverage) or at best (as Romney proposes), which state you live in and whether they have the good sense to do something about it?? Our NHS may not be perfect, but at least I know that if I or my family fall ill or are in an accident we will get treated, without anyone asking us if we can pay for it and without us worrying about how (or if) we can pay for it. If that is "Socialism", bring it on!

Marie W.
Marie W6 years ago

Someone tell me why US does not have universal health care like other nations?

Ron L.
Ron Loynes6 years ago

You all are missing the point. The basis for all the problems in health care is the costs. Regulate the costs to the same prices the insurance companies pay and many people can afford to pay the bill (over time maybe) but why is it legal for one company or person to pay one price and other person pays a different price. Another way to insure competition is have the fixed price insurance companies pay for services get paid to who you choose, for instance. If the price BCBS pays for you hearnia operation fixed at $2300 and your local hospital/doctors bill is $5500 then go to Costa Rica with the $2300 and pay $1200 and have a vacation as well. All 36 countries with better healthcare have two main characteristics everyone belong and pays a small fee and the prices are regulated. Check with World Health Organization website and a PBS movie on "Sick around the World" it's simple to fix. But remember in the USA there is no profit in making us healthy!

Pamela H.
Pamela H6 years ago

Dave C is right. I thought America was a land of equality; not just benefits for elitists but for everyone. It's supposed to be a first world country, not a third world.

Dave C.
David C6 years ago

if you want someone who will work to make the world better for everyone regardless, then vote for Mr. Obama........

if you only want someone who cares about white wealthy religous zealots then vote for Mr. Romney.......

Still want health care for all....who gives me a better chance?????

Rosemary Barker
Rosemary B6 years ago

You sir have no idea what you are talking about. I work a trauma hospital ER and ICU.
Why don't you do some good and volunteer in one and see for yourself!

paul m.
paul m6 years ago

If you don't have the money or proper Health cover ,,,,die on the Road ,because if you think
your going too get an adequate Medical/ Hosiptal service,,,,think again ,,

Don't forget this is an election year and once they are in , all promises are off..