Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has said he would eliminate the healthcare reform law of President Barack Obama if he were to win the presidential election on November 6. However, there is a big question as to whether he would or if any other president would have enough power to do it.
According to two professors from a leading university, Romney or any other president would not have the power to do so. However, Romney could do some things if he won the election and even more if the Republicans were able to take back control of Congress.
Romney’s presidential campaign website has promised that the former Massachusetts governor would give a top priority to undoing Obama’s healthcare reform. The site says on his first day at the White House, Romney would issue an executive order paving the way for waivers to be issued to the fifty states.
However, any attempt that Romney makes to unilaterally repeal the law would be against the U.S. Constitution, which requires a president to take care that laws are executed faithfully.
The healthcare law allows a president to issue states’ waivers but only in order for them to implement alternatives to a law that are better, but not worse. Nevertheless, the waivers will not be available for issue until sometime in 2017.
Health and Human Services can also issue waivers to states to change the way in which Medicaid is run, but those types of waivers are intended to help the law, not undermine it.
Romney could do certain things with the law, but it would be very hard for him to just eliminate it all at once. One thing he probably would be successful at is eliminating the individual mandate, which is the most criticized part of the law.