“Just what to do with the nation’s healthcare system has been argued time and again – but it always seems to come back to the ‘death panels.’
Such was the case at the debate in Denver on Wednesday night, when moderator Jim Lehrer asked the candidates whether Obamacare, one of the most contentious issues this election season, should be repealed.
Romney said it should, telling Lehrer that President Obama’s healthcare overhaul was too expensive for small businesses, that it cut funding for Medicare, and finally, that ‘it puts in place an unelected board that’s going to tell people ultimately what kind of treatments they can have.’”
– “Presidential debate: It always comes back to the ‘death panels,'” Alana Semuels, Los Angeles Times
“Board members aren’t elected, but it’s a stretch to say they’re … unaccountable. They’re appointed by the president and approved by the Senate. The president can fire them for neglect of duty or malfeasance.They’re required to recommend cuts to Medicare in years that other cost-saving measures don’t meet growth targets — but Congress can overrule their recommendations.”
Back to last night:
“Obama countered that ‘what this board does is identify best practices and says, let’s use the purchasing power of Medicare to institutionalize all these good things we do.’ But the president made a point of adding, ‘Let me just point out that this board we’re talking about can’t make decisions about what treatments are given. That’s explicitly prohibited in the law.’”
– “About that unelected Medicare board,” N.C. Aizenman, Washington Post blog
“Pat Boone says health care advisory board can ration care and deny Medicare treatments,” Politifact. “Pants on Fire.”
Image (“Sheriff Andy on Health Care Reform”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com
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