Romney urged Obama to adopt the individual mandate

While he’s had some momentum recently in the Republican presidential primary, Mitt Romney may have yet another hurdle to jump over. The Massachusetts health care law, known as RomneyCare, has long been a problem for him, but Romney had insisted that he would work to repeal ObamaCare, which was based on his plan.

However, when Washington was taking on health care, Romney urged President Barack Obama to look to the so-called “reforms” passed in Massachusetts, including the individual mandate, as a national model (emphasis mine):

Health care cannot be handled the same way as the stimulus and cap-and-trade bills. With those, the president stuck to the old style of lawmaking: He threw in every special favor imaginable, ground it up and crammed it through a partisan Democratic Congress. Health care is simply too important to the economy, to employment and to America’s families to be larded up and rushed through on an artificial deadline. There’s a better way. And the lessons we learned in Massachusetts could help Washington find it.
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First, we established incentives for those who were uninsured to buy insurance. 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. This doesn’t cost the government a single dollar. Second, we helped pay for our new program by ending an old one — something government should do more often. The federal government sends an estimated $42 billion to hospitals that care for the poor: Use those funds instead to help the poor buy private insurance, as we did.

Most of us following politics know that RomneyCare was the blueprint for ObamaCare. There really isn’t that much of a difference between the two laws. And we also know that Romney has previously said that his health care law should serve as a national model, though the former Massachusetts Governor insists that states should take it upon themselves.

Does this mean anything in the GOP race? Probably not. Gingrich has his own love affair with the individual mandate and Santorum hasn’t been opposed to expanding government-run health care — see his vote for Medicare Part D in 2003. But it doesn’t bode well for our hopes that ObamaCare will be repealed in a Romney Administration.

H/T: Buzz Feed


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