Mitt Romney backed the individual mandate at the federal level in 1994
“Mr. Romney could push someone out of an airplane and blame the ground for killing him.” - Wall Street Journal
While Mitt Romney is pushing his plans to repeal ObamaCare - a goal I hope we see attained - in USA Today, more information showing a desire to bring the individual mandate to the national level is coming to the surface. Via Dave Weigel comes this quote from 1994:
The question about Romney is where he would stand in Congress’s internecine battles. Would he side with Republicans such as John Chafee who have tried to develop constructive alternatives to Democratic legislation or with Republicans such as Phil Gramm and Newt Gingrich who have been willing to paralyze Congress for the sake of embarrassing the Clinton administration? Romney has indicated that he would side with the moderate wing. He endorsed the crime bill and refused to back Gingrich’s jejune “Contract with America.” He told me he would have backed Chafee’s health care bill. “I’m willing to vote for things that I am not wild with,” he said.
I realize Romney does well in polls, generally in the top two or three, and that he is the choice of many “business” types. However, his inconsistencies are essentially drowning his credibility on health care, which will be one of the bigger issues the eventual Republican nominee with have to deal with in a general election against President Barack Obama.
Romney cannot, in the eyes of a swing voters, hold any ground here. They’re going to say, “If his health care plan was so good for Massachusetts, as he so often claims, why isn’t good for the country?” The evidence that RomneyCare is not holding down health care costs and a fiscal boondoggle that is leading to doctors declining to see new patients and increasing wait times won’t matter. It gives Obama a leg up on an issue that he has struggled to win on with the public and undermines Romney’s campaign.