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Article updated: 10/5/2012 6:53 AM

Romney's Medicare plan raises cost questions

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By Associated Press

WASHINGTON -- Aides to Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney say his Medicare plan won't try to control costs by limiting the payments that future retirees would use to buy private health insurance. That adds detail to a proposal that has both intrigued and confused many Americans.

Reining in costs is vital to keeping Medicare affordable, and in their plans both President Barack Obama and GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan set limits on the growth of future spending.

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Independent experts say they doubt Romney's Medicare plan can succeed without some kind of hard spending limit. But campaign officials say the savings will come through competition among health insurance plans.

An official with the nonpartisan Concord Coalition, executive director Robert Bixby, says it sounds like Romney is trying to have it both ways.

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