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The Republican plan to overhaul healthcare

The Washington Post, August 28, 2012

Politico has obtained a draft of the 2012 proposal and, for healthcare, four years has meant a sea change. The Republican party now throws its weight behind a complete restructuring of both entitlement programs. Since Medicare and Medicaid were created in 1965, they have operated as insurance plans where subscribers receive a set amount of benefits. The Republican plan calls for a fundamental change to that structure. They want to set a specific budget for the program and then have seniors and states figure out what benefits they can purchase. The concept of "defined benefit" gets thrown out the window. "This is the only way," the platform says, "to limit costs and restore consumer choice for patients."