Tuesday, May 6, 2008

McCain Bags the Health Care Issue

Despite all the polling and social science, political life continues to be intriguingly unpredictable. So, with a generally unpopular war in Iraq, a shaky economy and a very unpopular sitting Republican President, the Democrats should be way ahead in the polls and the Republicans deep down in the dumps. Instead, it is looking better and better for Republican John McCain if he just plays his cards right.

Over at National Review Online, in "The Right Rx," he plays precisely the right card on Health Care policy. This should be a Democrat vote getter. But with this consumer-driven health care solution, McCain will walk away with it.

The Obama and Clinton response to these problems is to promise universal coverage, whatever its cost, and the massive tax increases, mandates, and government regulation that it imposes. But in the end this will accomplish one thing only. We will replace the inefficiency, irrationality, and uncontrolled costs of the current system with the inefficiency, irrationality, and uncontrolled costs of a government monopoly. We’ll have all the problems, and more, of private health care — rigid rules, long waits, and lack of choices, and risk degrading its great strengths and advantages including the innovation and life-saving technology that make American medicine the most advanced in the world.

I have a different approach. I believe the key to real reform is to restore control over our health-care system to the patients themselves. To that end, my reforms are built on the pursuit of three goals: paying only for quality medical care, having insurance choices that are diverse and responsive to individual needs, and restoring our sense of personal responsibility.

For more in this consumer-driven approach, see my previous post on Regina Herzlinger's address at The King's College, "Hope for the Health Care Mess."


Chris said...

I agree very much with Mr. McCain's health care plan. It is far superior to the bureaucratic mess into which Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama would take us.

We have to wonder, though, he is going to account for those who are already sick. Of course, the Treasury could easily fund them even more than a tax credit, but might there be a better way? It will be interesting to see how he handles this in debates and the general election.

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