Charlie Crist on Health Care


2007 & 2010: opposed ObamaCare; now supports fixing it

Opposed to ObamaCare when he was a Republican, Crist is now a Democrat and is all for the Affordable Care Act. Such flip-flops make Crist's relationship with the unpopular law one of the most-complicated in the nation.

Yet Crist has little choice but to embrace the law right now. Crist needs to prove his Democratic bona fides; the Democratic base approves of the law. "I think it's been great," Crist said in a CNN interview last Sunday.

Gov. Rick Scott's team released a web ad highlighting Crist's support for the law and Pres. Obama's latest backtrack on the law when he admitted some people might not be able to keep their doctors, despite the president's prior promise.

In 2010, Crist said the Medicare Advantage cuts were reason alone to vote against the legislation. Now, as a Democrat, he's using the "keep and fix" argument. "I don't support the cuts to Medicare Advantage," Crist said. "In every major law, there are things you like & things you don't. The President & Congress should fix it."

Source: Miami Herald on 2014 Florida governor's race , Mar 16, 2014

Likes parts of ObamaCare but it's too big & too bureaucratic

Once the president began pushing his Affordable Care Act, conservative audiences from Tamarac to Tacoma would boo reflexively at the very mention of the word "Obamacare."

I didn't agree with everything Barack Obama did. I didn't love the president's health-care plan. I thought it was too big, too complicated, and too bureaucratic. I didn't like the way it had inched through Congress, twisted and turned by so many special-interest groups. But I wasn't a crazy zealot on the topic. I wasn't shouting that Obamacare was about to wreck America. I actually liked many of its planks--covering people with previous medical conditions, eliminating lifetime benefit caps, and helping millions of people afford health insurance. Once the act became law, I was far more interested in making the new system work for people than endlessly trashing it and stirring up the base. There I was, being moderate again!

Source: The Party's Over, by Charlie Crist, p.201 , Feb 4, 2014

AdWatch: unwavering support of ObamaCare

Let's Get to Work, a PAC affiliated with Gov. Rick Scott, is going on the attack, hitting former Gov. Charlie Crist for his support of President Barack Obama's federal health-care law. Despite spending most of his career as a Republican and only joining the Democrats at the end of 2012, Crist is the favorite for his new party's nomination to challenge Scott in 2014.

Let's Get to Work is now running a television ad showing clips of Crist expressing his support for Obama's law.

"Charlie Crist's unwavering support of ObamaCare and its disastrous effects on the 300,000 Floridians that are losing their current health insurance plans is alarming," said the chairman of the Republican Party of Florida (RPOF) on Monday. "Plain and simple, Florida cannot afford Charlie Crist and the liberal Obama agenda."

Source: Sunshine State News AdWatch on 2014 Florida Governor race , Dec 9, 2013

Cover Florida: 6,000 uninsured given peace of mind

Q: You said a month ago there may be parts of healthcare reform that you don't have to scrap. What parts?

CRIST: Pre-existing instances should not be a discriminatory tool used by insurance companies to not give people insurance. We need to repeal this thing. Let's start over. The real problems with health care are access and affordability. And we have approached those in Florida, a plan called Cover Florida. No tax dollars involved. No government mandates. I think Washington could learn a lot from Florida.

Q: We looked into Cover Florida--stripped-down insurance for stripped-down prices. As you say, all voluntary. But only 0.1% of Florida's uninsured have signed up for it, 5,000 out of millions of people.

CRIST: It's about 6,000 now. Every individual of those 6,000 now has that peace of mind, doesn't have to worry about their child having a catastrophic illness.

Q: But it's hardly "Cover Florida."

CRIST: Well, I think it's important that it's Cover Families. People who get it like it.

Source: Fox News Sunday 2010 Florida primary Senate debate , Mar 28, 2010

Get waste & fraud out of Medicare so program will survive

CRIST: I think we need to take the fraud out of Social Security, the waste, in Medicare as well.

Q: With all due respect, waste and fraud--people have been talking about it for years. Don't you actually have to make some benefit changes if you're going to deal with this debt issue?

CRIST: You might have to make some, but I think what you want to do first is get the waste and the fraud out.

Q: Such as what?

CRIST: I think you have to have strict enforcement. You have to have U.S. attorneys that go after this with a serious approach and realize that in order for these programs to be able to survive so that my children and my grandchildren have an opportunity to be able to benefit from them, we have to spend less by getting waste and fraud out of these systems.

Source: Fox News Sunday 2010 Florida primary Senate debate , Mar 28, 2010

Cover Florida: $150 a month plan for 3.8 million uninsured

Among the many ideas floated by Gov. Charlie Crist last month for improving health care in Florida, one stood out for its simplicity and its allure: Offer the estimated 3.8 million Floridians who lack health insurance an affordable plan for “$150 a month or less.”

Crist’s “Cover Florida” proposal would not come with a state mandate that individuals had to buy it or employers had to offer it. And it would give insurance companies lots of leeway in deciding how to structure such a health plan--as long

Source: Orlando Sentinel, “Plan for health insurance” , Mar 14, 2008

Cover Florida: $150 a month plan for 3.8 million uninsured

they included “a robust package of preventive, primary and urgent-care benefits, including hospitalization.”

A $150-per-month health-insurance policy “can’t get you comprehensive coverage,” says one analyst; such a plan would either have sky-high deductibles for hospital stays or have no hospitalization coverage at all. Another analyst replies, “Anything that moves some number of people from the uninsured category into the insured category is a good thing that is worth considering.”

Source: Orlando Sentinel, “Plan for health insurance” , Mar 14, 2008

Expand tax-free medical savings accounts

Source: Congressional 1998 National Political Awareness Test , Nov 1, 1998

Other candidates on Health Care: Charlie Crist on other issues:
FL Gubernatorial:
Alexander Snitker
Rick Scott
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