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‘It’s Not Worth Getting Angry About’

Tell that to the Tea Party.

1:15 AM, Jan 27, 2012 • By JEFFREY H. ANDERSON
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Romney replied, “Everyone has a requirement to either buy it or pay the state for the cost of providing them free care.” 

Santorum said, “Just so I understand this, in Massachusetts, everybody is mandated as a condition of breathing in Massachusetts, to buy health insurance, and if you don’t, and if you don’t, you have to pay a fine.”

Moments later, as the discussion over Romneycare and Obamacare continued, Romney rebuked Santorum, saying, “First of all, it's not worth getting angry about.” 

Romney then reiterated that his fundamental objection to Obamacare, apart from it being an affront to federalism, is apparently that he doesn’t like the way it’s funded:  “Look, I know you don’t like the plan that we had [in Massachusetts]. I don’t like the Obama plan. His plan cuts Medicare by $500 billion. We didn’t, of course, touch anything like that. He raises taxes by $500 billion. We didn’t do that.” 

Romney then repeated his claim that somehow Obamacare, which requires that essentially everyone buy government-approved health insurance, deals with “100 percent of the people of the country,” whereas Romneyacare, which requires that essentially everyone buy government-approved health insurance, only deals with “the 8 percent of the people that were uninsured.” 

Moments later, he asserted, “If I'm president of the United States, I will stop it [Obamacare]. And in debating Barack Obama…I will be able to point out that what he did was wrong.” He then repeated his mantra: “It was bad medicine, it's bad for the economy, and I will repeal it.”

Santorum got in the last word: “[W]hat Governor Romney said is just factually incorrect. Your mandate is no different than Barack Obama’s mandate. It is the same mandate….You take over 100 percent [of health care], just like he takes over 100 percent....The same fines that you put in place in Massachusetts are [the] fines that he puts in place in the federal level. Same programs.”

The exchange offered a stark reminder of one inescapable set of facts:  President Obama spent the bulk of his first 15 months in office ramming his signature legislation down the throats of the American people. Yet, as his State of the Union Address made clear, he’d rather not bring it up. So if Republicans are going to have a mandate to repeal this unprecedented threat to liberty and fiscal solvency, they will have to bring it up — or, rather, their nominee will have to bring it up. And he will have to know why he opposes it — not merely that he does.

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