Question of the Day

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Ben Cohen
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Governor Mitt Romney of MA

Andrew Sullivan wonders whether the GOP Presidential candidates actually have any policy proposals when it comes to health care access in America:

They are poles apart on the numbers of uninsured. Perry's Texas has 27.2 percent of its population without health insurance - the worst record in America. Massachusetts has an uninsured rate of 5.2 percent - the best. And yet Romney is still apologizing for this achievement.

Tell me: is it actually a Republican goal that people cannot have decent access to healthcare? Do they have any proposals to help? So far, the examples seem to be yes and no.

I think it is clear that the Republicans are not in the business of serious policy proposals - they are doing quite nicely out of slamming the President for being a socialist/communist/appeaser and haven't needed to prove they are serious when it comes to actually governing. When pressed on policy, all the candidates parrot the same line regardless of the topic: Less government, less regulation and lower taxes.

The strategy is working thus far, but when election season really kicks off and Obama is out on the road countering GOP talking points one by one, it should become abundantly clear that the Republicans have absolutely nothing to contribute to the discussion other than failed ideas from the Reagan era.

Hopefully the public catches on to this and listens to the President, who despite his flaws, intellectually understands what is happening to the country's health care system. While Obama has failed to adequately address America's severe health care problems, he has at least attempted to use the power of the government creatively to increase access to health care. The Republicans just want less government, leaving access to health care down to the magical power of the free market.

If Republicans are banking on the popularity of repealing Obama's health care act that promises to cover all Americans regardless of income or health, they really do need to go back to the drawing room. While the angry rhetoric sounds good right now, the reality of the GOP's vacant ideology will set in during election time. Getting no health care isn't a vote winner, and at some point the Republican candidates will have to address it. Sadly, they haven't had any new ideas for 30 years, so expect a pretty one sided debate.

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