One of the biggest reasons those who support Mitt Romney for VP is that he is supposedly an “economic conservative” who will shore up support among “pocket book conservatives.” As I and others have been saying for quite a while now, Romney’s actual record proves that he is neither socially conservative nor fiscally conservative.
Today’s Wall St Journal editorial provides further proof that Romney’s “signature” achievement as governor, his government run quasi socialist “universal” healthcare plan, has been a total bust which is no surprise since government mandates and price controls always lead to contrived scarcities, decreased quality, and inflated costs.
Here is what the Wall St. Journal had to say about Romneycare:
Most of this growth in coverage has instead come via a new state entitlement called Commonwealth Care. This provides subsidized insurance to those under 300% of the poverty level, or about $63,000 for a family of four. About 174,000 have joined this low- or no-cost program, a trend that is likely to speed up.
As this public option gets overwhelmed, budget gaskets are blowing everywhere. Mr. Patrick had already bumped up this year’s spending to $869 million, $144 million over its original estimate. Liberals duly noted that these tax hikes are necessary because enrollment in Commonwealth Care is much higher than anticipated. But of course more people will have coverage if government gives it to them for free. The problem is that someone has to pay for it.
Thus the extra tab of $129 million, which may need to go higher because it relies on uncertain federal funds from Medicaid. For now, Mr. Patrick wants one-time (yeah, right) charges of $33 million on insurers and $28 million on providers, plus some shuffling of state funds. The balance comes from an estimated $33 million boost in the state’s “pay or play” tax: If businesses don’t offer “fair and reasonable” insurance to their employees, they get hit.
This is a textbook example of how business taxes evolve into “pay or pay,” the first recourse of state-funded health systems. Politicians love levies on business because they disguise the overall bill from voters. But such taxes are merely passed along to workers in the form of reduced take-home pay, since all health costs are part of compensation.
With healthcare reform already a major issue in the election, the last thing McCain needs is to pick a running mate like Romney whose signature healthcare plan/economic reform that was endorsed by Ted Kennedy, Hillary Clinton, and Planned Parenthood, has been a total failure.
And while the WSJ limited its analysis to the economic effects of Romneycare, it is worth noting that his healthcare plan accomplished what no other Democrat has been able to in establishing tax payer funded abortion with a 50 dollar co-pay as a “healthcare benefit.”
If McCain picks Romney, McCain will lose whatever tactical advantage he may have right now on the healthcare issue in my humble opinion.