Web Zap*Germs Archive

September 29, 2004

Health Care Visions: Bush vs Kerry

I wrote a recent post mentioning the Bush Administration's provision, via a bill passed by Congress in 2003, of US$15 billion in taxpayers' funds to fight HIV/AIDS around the world. That's more than any other US president and congress have made available to the world to combat the AIDS scourge, and far more than any other nation in the world.

With the 02 November election fast approaching, it would be helpful to review the overall health-care positions of both President Bush and his challenger, Senator Kerry. Below is a snip from a WebMD article providing an overview of the contenders' positions, followed by links to the health-care pages of each man's election website.

For Bush, the answer lies largely in giving families more control and more responsibility over deciding how to spend their health dollars in the private system while spending relatively few tax dollars expanding access to health insurance.

Kerry wants to repeal tax cuts enjoyed by the richest 2% of Americans to finance a much broader -- and much more expensive -- system of subsidies designed to lower costs and boost insurance rates.

"I don't think believe we've ever had a presidential election where the two candidates differ so radically on health care policy," says John C. Goodman, PhD, a health economist and president of the conservative-leaning National Center for Policy Analysis.


Both sides agree that Kerry's plan would cover far more of America's 45 million uninsured people. Estimates of the number of new people covered under Bush's plan range from 2.4 million to 6.7 million, while several studies agree that Kerry's plan would extend coverage to about 27 million.

But all that expanded coverage comes at a higher cost. While Bush's plan comes in at about $91 billion over 10 years, Kerry's weighs in at $653 billion, according to Thorpe's estimates. Other estimates take the cost well above $1 trillion, a mark the Kerry campaign vigorously disputes.

Democrats say that a repeal of tax cuts for Americans making over $200,000 will more than pay for the plan, but Goodman says that the cuts won't even come close to covering the cost. "What Kerry is basically saying to the vast majority of Americans is you're going to get something for nothing," he says.

Bush For President health care policy proposal

Kerry For President health care policy proposal


Post a Comment

<< Home