The Corner

The Commonwealth Fund Makes It Up, Again

The liberal Commonwealth Fund is at it again, releasing today a new study, “Health Care in the 2012 Presidential Election: How the Obama and Romney Plans Stack Up.” But the “study” is, in a word, nonsense.

The crucial sentence in the publication is this one: “Because Romney has not yet fleshed out the details of [his health reform] proposals, a set of assumptions was made.” That is a significant understatement.

The work regurgitates a similar “study” by the liberal FamiliesUSA last week, which devised its own assumptions about what a Romney plan would look like. Commonwealth, like FamiliesUSA, made up a health plan and attributed it to Romney in order to put an alternative to Obamacare in the worst possible light. The result is nothing more than a press release for the Obama campaign. The Commonwealth study estimates the resulting number of uninsured by age and income level in every state for the Romney “plan” and Obamacare. It concludes: “The number of uninsured individuals is estimated to increase in every state and to 72 million nationwide — with children and low- and middle-income Americans particularly hard hit — under Governor Mitt Romney’s plan.”

The fact that Commonwealth came up with a “Romney plan” that would actually make the current situation worse shows how detached the authors are from reality. Commonwealth’s assumptions about help for the uninsured, solutions for Medicaid, and reform of Medicare are policies of their own creation, not Governor Romney’s. Romney has outlined his plan, but has also said he would work with Congress to develop the legislative details necessary for an actual analysis. The real effort here is to get the American people to forget how much they despise the law that the president actually signed, which the CBO estimates will cost at least $2.6 trillion and still leave 30 million people uninsured. Commonwealth should be ashamed to call this a serious “study.”

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