Opinion: Romney-Ryan Medicare plan could prove fatal

Following the selection of running mate Paul Ryan (R-WI), as well as the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney has become even bolder. Before, he was running as a middle-ground Republican who could appeal (somewhat) to both sides, despite the fact that he moved more and more towards the right throughout primaries.

However, with the ultra-conservative Ryan, Romney has lost some of that status. Yes, he has all but secured every single conservative vote in the nation, but was that necessary? Those votes were already going to him, as conservatives would never vote to put Obama back into office, no matter who was running against him. Now Romney faces the challenge of showing voters on the fence that he is the right choice for the job. Having Paul Ryan only makes this harder.

The Romney-Ryan campaign’s highly conservative stance on Medicare may alienate many voters. Do they have a plan? Yes. Is that better than many other politicians out there who clamor for change yet don’t propose anything? Yes. But will this plan appeal to the masses? Probably not. This Medicare plan proposes to initiate a system of vouchers, where citizens receive a certain amount of money from the government to pay for private insurance or to cover their Medicare premiums. His plan has received minimal public scrutiny so far, as it only affects people under the age of 55. However, as more people look ahead toward their futures, the plan will not go over so well. People could end up paying as much as $9,000 out of pocket for their medical coverage per year, which is much higher than the current cost.

Additionally, citizens with pre-existing conditions or ailments would find it nearly impossible to find coverage within their price-range as private insurers mainly search for profit, and patients with cancer, heart problems, and other debilitating diseases do not provide them a profit. This vexes me. Having to pay obscene amounts of money per year in your retirement, as well as paying taxes to support the pre-existing Medicare seniors, is an inane request to ask of any citizen. On top of that, giving the business to private insurers and allowing them to refuse coverage to disabled people is deplorable. If this plan were accepted, children would have to pay for their own health care, as well as for their parents (if they could find any at all). Any parent with a pre-existing condition would be hard-pressed to find reasonable rates during their senior years. However, as it currently stands, they would receive health care at a reasonable cost and would not be denied a plan because of their conditions.

The nomination of Paul Ryan and the increasingly vitriolic rhetoric from the Romney campaign forces the election to focus on fiscal issues in these final months. However, in the end, I think that these decisions of Romney’s will end up hurting his bid and will give President Obama the upper-hand.