Giuliani Touts Tax Incentives To Boost Health Insurance Rates
Former New York City Mayor and presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani (R) on Thursday indicated he soon will announce specifics of a health care proposal that would shift tens of millions of U.S. residents from employer-sponsored health insurance plans to private coverage, Long Island Newsday reports. His health care proposal intends "to build on his recent efforts to draw sharp distinctions between his free-market approach to government and what Giuliani labels the Democrats' big-government style," according to Newsday.
Giuliani said he would give families a $15,000 tax credit to purchase private insurance policies and allow them to keep whatever credit remains as an incentive to purchase cost-effective plans. "If we can empower 30 million, 40 million, 50 million and eventually 100 million Americans to be able to go out and make these choices, you're going to have the free market accomplish the thing that only a free market can accomplish -- and that is, lower costs and better quality," Giuliani said in an interview on the Sean Hannity radio program.
Giuliani "makes no mention of covering everyone," according to Newsday. His proposals "mirror those made by" President Bush in 2006, including expanding the use of health savings accounts, Newsday reports. Giuliani said during the radio program that on Tuesday in New Hampshire he will "lay out an agenda for the future" on several topics.
However, "aides downplayed the possibility that he would talk about his health care proposal," according to Newsday (Gordon, Long Island Newsday, 6/8).
Former Massachusetts governor and presidential candidate Mitt Romney (R) on Wednesday defended the recently enacted Massachusetts health insurance law, the Nashua Telegraph reports. Massachusetts' law, which was signed into law in 2006 by Romney, requires most state residents to obtain health coverage by July 1.
The law "has been attacked by some conservatives as reminiscent of the failed universal health care program" proposed in 1993 by then-first lady and presidential candidate Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), according to the Telegraph.
Romney said the Massachusetts law is "the conservative, small-government, personal responsibility plan," while the "current approach" is the "big-government approach" where "people with no insurance show up at a hospital, and we all pay. My plan stops that." Romney said if elected he would not propose a "one-size-fits-all" national health care plan but would encourage states to craft their own proposals (Halliday, Nashua Telegraph, 6/7).