Good Grief… Romney Urged Obama to Embrace Individual Mandate in Obamacare (Updated)
Good grief… Back in 2009 Mitt Romney pushed Barack Obama to embrace the individual mandate in Obamacare.
In July 2009, Mitt Romney wrote an op-ed in USA Today urging Barack Obama to usean individual mandate at the national level to control healthcare costs.
On the campaign trail now, Mitt Romney says the individual mandate is appropriate for Massachusetts, but not the nation. Repeatedly in debates, Romney has said he opposes a national individual mandate.
But back in 2009, as Barack Obama was formulating his healthcare vision for the country, Mitt Romney encouraged him publicly to use an individual mandate. In his op-ed, Governor Romney suggested that the federal government learn from Massachusetts how to make healthcare available for all. One of those things was “Using tax penalties, as we did, or tax credits, as others have proposed, encourages “free riders” to take responsibility for themselves rather than pass their medical costs on to others.”
Friends, if Mitt Romney is the nominee, we will be unable to fight Obama on an issue that 60% of Americans agree with us on.
UPDATE: Jeff T. From the Franklin County Patriots sent this update.
The art of politics involves distortion and obfuscation – something the Obama campaign team is quite practiced at.
One of the issues the Obama campaign realizes could be a serious impediment to his re-election is the issue of “Obamacare” – which most Americans oppose. Their solution – make the electorate believe that if Romney is the Republican candidate, the issue of Obamacare is “taken off the table.”
Although some of Romney’s opponents have taken up that mantra, nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, Romney and “Romneycare” are our best weapons against Obama and Obamacare.
There are two reasons why Romneycare is the best weapon against Obamacare – one based on the Constitution and the other based on costs and effectiveness.
So far 26 states have joined in challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare on the basis that it violates state sovereignty. The Constitution provides the federal government with limited “enumerated” powers. None of those powers deal with insurance or the power to mandate the purchase of anything. States, on the other hand, have always had the province to enact insurance legislation, in all forms (life, home, auto, health) and even the power to require the purchase of same. This principal of federalism is the bedrock of our Constitution.
With Romney as the party’s nominee, the issue of state sovereignty, and state vs. federal powers, as defined in our Constitution, will come to the forefront, making it clear that Obamacare is unconstitutional.
On a more practical matter, Romneycare provides another solution for the Republicans. Health care costs will continue to rise and this issue is not going away. Although the current version of Obamacare is not popular, most Americans still give the Democrats better grades on the issue of health care than they do Republicans. They believe that Democrats at least want to do something about this issue, and that Republican oppose every piece of legislation that purports to address the issue.
With Romneycare, all the liberals and socialist wannabes in the Blue states can see that the solution they want is available – at the state level.
We can thank our Founding Fathers for the brilliance of this approach. States that implement government run health care, will discover, as Massachusetts has started to already, that health care costs go up, not down, when government dictated insurance is implemented. This is what our Founding Fathers had in mind with the “crucibles of freedom” they released under federalism.
As for the claim that Romney “encouraged him (Obama) publicly to use an individual mandate” – well that’s another distortion. If you actually read the Op-Ed, you will find that he is speaking out against Obamacare. He even states that “Massachusetts also proved that you don’t need government insurance.” Yes, he did point out that Massachusetts kept their program’s costs low by providing tax incentives for individuals to purchase their own health insurance, but that’s different than saying he “encouraged” Obama to do the same, when he was arguing against what Obama was doing.
As for the issue of using tax incentives to encourage the purchase of health insurance, that is a position most Republican presidential candidates have taken, when asked how they would address the problem of “free-riders” on the health care system. In fact, even the 2008 Republican platform states that “Republicans propose to correct inequities in the current tax code that drive up the number of uninsured and to level the playing field so that individuals who choose a health insurance plan in the individual market … should receive the same tax benefit as those who are insured through work, whether through a tax credit or other means.”
If Romney is our party’s nominee, it will become clear that Romney’s approach is constitutional and that Obama’s is not. In the long run, it will also prove that neither work.
Franklin County Patriots