Romney commits to denationalise Medicaid in third presidential debate

BMJ 2012; 345 doi: (Published 24 October 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;345:e7198
  1. Edward Davies
  1. 1BMJ, New York

Medicaid would become a state devolved program if Mitt Romney wins the election next month, he stressed during the third presidential debate.

Despite the 90 minute exchange being designed to focus on foreign policy, both President Barak Obama and Governor Romney repeatedly returned to domestic policies such as health and the economy.

Romney also reiterated his desire to repeal the Affordable Care Act as a priority, should he win the election.

Asked for specifics on how to reduce national spending, after saying that he would not cut the military, Romney said that stopping “Obamacare” would be his first priority. “We [reduce national spending] by reducing spending in a whole series of programs . . . Number one I get rid of is ‘Obamacare.’ There are a number of things that sound good but, frankly, we just can’t afford them. And that one doesn’t sound good, and it’s not affordable, so I get rid of that one from day one; to the extent humanly possible, we get that out.”

Going on to talk about Medicaid he said: “Number two, we take some programs that we are going to keep, like Medicaid, which is a program for the poor. We take that healthcare program for the poor, and we give it to the states to run because states run these programs more efficiently. As a governor, I thought, please, give me this program.”

Romney has previously talked about block-grant proposals for Medicaid, and one Bloomberg Government Study claims that “Romney’s changes to Medicaid would lead to an estimated $1.26 trillion drop in federal funding from 2014 through 2022.”


Cite this as: BMJ 2012;345:e7198