Key elements of Hillary Clinton's healthcare proposal are strikingly similar to the tenets of the health overhaul that Mitt Romney signed into law in Massachusetts last year. But you would never guess it from the broadsides he hurled yesterday against what he called "Hillarycare 2.0" and described as "a European-style socialized medicine plan."
"What Hillary proposed is in many ways the Massachusetts plan gone national, and I think that's great," said MIT economics professor Jonathan Gruber, an early adviser to Romney on the healthcare reform law who has consulted with all the major Democratic presidential candidates. "We are the shot fired around the world again - there's a whole new movement in healthcare started by what we did here. And rather than claiming credit for it, Romney's running away from it."
There are a few differences between Clinton's plan and the law Romney signed. Even though Romney said Clinton's plan is inspired by "European bureaucracies," it does not open any new government agency, according to the campaign, unlike the Massachusetts law, which created the Health Connector to help uninsured people obtain insurance. Massachusetts also does not provide subsidies to small employers to help them provide insurance, as Clinton's plan would.