Shawn: I found that Bailey piece fairly persuasive when I first read it. I think the Massachusetts experience demonstrates, though, that the “basic” insurance plans can get larded up with so many requirements during the legislative sausage-making process that the mandates become unworkable. That said, in a different political environment than Massachusetts’s I can imagine a much better mandatory insurance scheme passing, which might very well act as the firewall against full socialization that Bailey envisions. This brings us to the reason that the Massachusetts bill, for all its faults, is much better that Hillary’s plan: It only applies to one state.
School voucher programs are an analagous case (which I bring up mainly because I know more about education policy than health care policy): By most accounts, the Florida and Wisconsin voucher programs are better designed than the Ohio program. It doesn’t make sense to count on Washington to get a voucher program right for the whole country. The same goes for health care. Romney’s “it should be crafted by the states” line is exactly right.
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