Policy Documents

The Case against John Kerry's Health Plan

John C. Goodman and Devon M. Herrick –
September 10, 2006

Executive Summary

Senator John Kerry has proposed a plan to radically reform the U.S. health care system.  If he is successful, millions of middle-income families will be enrolled in Medicaid, the federal-state health program for the poor.  Millions more will get their insurance through a system of managed competition modeled after the federal employee's health system and similar to what Hillary Clinton proposed more than a decade ago.  Most people would be forced from the private health plans they have today.

The ostensible purpose of Kerry's proposal is to insure the uninsured.  By some estimates as many as 44 million people lack health insurance at any one time.  Sen. Kerry's goal is to insure about two-thirds of them.  The effort will be expensive, even by Kerry's own estimate. We put the price of these reforms in excess of $1 trillion over ten years -- an amount equal t almost $1,000 per year for every household in America.