Republicans Can ‘Win’ on Health Care, Rove Writes
The "government-heavy" plan announced on Monday by presidential candidate Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) "once again shows" that "the answers politicians offer on health care highlight the deep differences between liberals and conservatives," Karl Rove, former adviser to President Bush, writes in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece.
The health care debate is one Republicans "cannot avoid" but also is "one [Republicans] can win -- if [they] offer a bold plan," Rove continues.
He writes that "what everyone wants" is "the ability to choose their own doctor and health coverage that meets their family's particular needs."
The reforms that will accomplish those goals include: providing tax credits or deductions to individuals who purchase health insurance outside of an employer; increasing the use of health savings accounts; making health insurance portable; increasing competition among health insurers by allowing consumers to purchase health insurance offered in a different state; allowing small businesses to pool risk to lower costs and increase competition; increasing transparency of quality and cost data for consumers; curbing frivolous malpractice lawsuits; and building on current successful programs such as the Medicare prescription drug plan, according to Rove.
Rove writes that "the best health reform proposals will be those that recognize and build on the virtues of our market-based medical system."
He concludes that Clinton "may think Americans want to trade freedom and innovation for the illusory security of government regulation and surrender control of their health decisions to government bureaucrats. My bet is 2008 will teach us something different if Republicans make health care a centerpiece issue" (Rove, Wall Street Journal, 9/18).