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Government and Politics


U.S.Senate challenger Mandel releases health plan to replace the Affordable Health Care Act
Ten point plan would elimate President's plan and boost health savings accounts, tort reform, interstate insurance sales among other proposals
by WKSU's KEVIN NIEDERMIER


Reporter
Kevin Niedermier
 
Josh Mandel lays out his health care plan at a Westlake orthopedic center. Behind him are supporters (L-R) Dr. Beth Haynes, Dr. Paul Kampman, Dr. Michael Hritz and Dr. Jeff Roberts.
Courtesy of Kevin Niedermier
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U.S. Senate hopeful Josh Mandel is crossing Ohio today to unveil a 10 point healthcare reform plan he says will reduces costs and improve quality.The Cleveland-area Republican is running against Democrat Sherrod Brown, a stanch supporter of President Obama’s Affordable Health Care Act.                                                                                                       

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Josh Mandel says his plan is not new ideas, but a collection of proposals supported by Republicans and some Democrats. At a press conference in suburban Cleveland, he said his first priority is eliminating the Affordable Health Care Act. Mandel calls it a government takeover that reduces choice and raises costs. And he wants to give states the power to create block grants with Medicaid funds. He says reducing frivolous malpractice suits would lower costs, and so would allowing health insurance to be sold across state lines. Mandel is calling for tax equality for healthcare. He says people who buy their own health insurance are at a disadvantage compared to people with employee health care.

“They can buy it with pre-tax dollars, this pushes people to buy health insurance through their employers which creates a problem with pre-existing conditions because you can be trapped in a job.  I believe we should do everything in this country to ensure there is coverage for pre-existing conditions, but the tax environment in this country gives people who are self-employed a disadvantage if they have a preexisting condition.”

Brown campaign disputes Mandel’s claims

Just about any talk about health care reform includes Medicare. Mandel says he would restore more than $700 billion in what he calls cuts to Medicare through the Affordable Health Care Act. Sherrod Brown’s campaign spokesman Justin Barazsky calls Mandel’s plan, slogans over substance.

“The problem with Josh’s plan is that half of it is untrue. There were no cuts to Medicare, Josh Mandel is defending give-a-ways to big insurance companies. The reform to health care ended give-a-ways to big insurance and not a single benefit was cut. It’s hard to speak to the substance of a plan that includes false statements that non-partisan fact checking organizations have already dissected.” 

Mandel says he put his plan together because many Republicans want to eliminate the Affordable Health Care Act, but not enough of them are offering any alternatives.                                                                                                 
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