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Press Release - Jon on Healthcare Reform - Without a Mandate

July 11, 2011

There is not a family, business or government in this nation that is not affected by our broken health care system - its red tape, its lack of access, and its skyrocketing costs.

There are two general approaches to reform. One is to use the heavy hand of government via strict mandates and regulations, which is what the federal government has done, and which Jon has forcefully said he'd repeal.

The other option is to harness the free market and give consumers more control over their health care. This is the path Jon took as governor.

(See a comparison between the free-market health care reform implemented in Utah by Governor Huntsman and the government-run health care plan implemented in Massachusetts.)

In 2008 he spearheaded and passed reforms that, rather than burdening people with mandates, empowered them with the freedom to choose and negotiate their own coverage in a competitive marketplace. These reforms included an exchange described by Utah health officials as "the other end of the spectrum" from the government-run Massachusetts health care program. In fact, the New York Times compared the convenience of purchasing coverage from Utah's exchange to downloading music from iTunes.

Former Utah Speaker of the House David Clark, who was the lead sponsor on the Utah health care reform package, recently stated: "After considering all feasible reform options, we determined that market-based principles - not mandates - were the right choice for reforming health care." And even though these reforms have only been in full effect for one year, "the number of employers enrolling in the Exchange is growing, and its defined-contribution approach is reaching people who were previously uninsured."

As Kathleen Parker has noted: "Huntsman has overseen a blueprint for the overhaul of Utah's health care system that could be a model for a more rational approach to national reform."

Jon Huntsman, Press Release - Jon on Healthcare Reform - Without a Mandate Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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