imageDavid Weinberger at The Daily Caller wrote an op/ed about how RomneyCare doesn’t need to hurt Mitt Romney’s presidential hopes.  How?  An appeal to federalism:

Mr. Romney needs to make clear that, following the tradition of American federalism, RomneyCare was implemented at the state level. The important idea behind federalism is that what works in one state won’t necessarily work in another. Likewise, what doesn’t work in one state certainly won’t work at the national level.

A one-size-fits-all health care mandate at the state level, regardless of what one thinks of its merits, is vastly different than a one-size-fits-all health care mandate at the national level. In the case of the former, if individuals don’t like the mandate and are unsuccessful at opposing it through the ballot box, they have the option of leaving that state for another; in the case of the latter, if individuals don’t like the mandate and are unsuccessful at opposing it at the ballot box, they’re stuck. This is a monumentally crucial difference.

While I agree that states under the federalist model are laboratories for experiments such as this, it doesn’t take Mitt Romney off the hook.  Nobody thinks that he would try to pass something of this nature on the federal level, besides it has already been done.  President Obama said RomneyCare was a model for him.

We thought that if we shaped a bill that wasn’t that different from bills that had previously been introduced by Republicans — including a Republican governor in Massachusetts who’s now running for President — that, you know, we would be able to find some common ground there.

Oops.  Then there are the parallels between the two systems:

Romney’s problem is that, despite his demurrals, the parallels between Obamacare and his 2006 Massachusetts reform plan are striking. Both plans are built around an individual mandate requiring citizens to purchase a government-designed insurance plan. Both plans dramatically increase government subsidies and Medicaid eligibility. Both plans use an exchange to redesign the individual and small-group insurance markets, creating a “managed competition” model for insurance. And both Massachusetts and Obamacare prohibit insurers from managing risk, shifting costs from older and sicker individuals to the young and healthy. Neither Obamacare nor Romneycare includes any substantial cost-containment mechanism.

He can cite federalism all he wants, RomneyCare was a failed experiment.  An appeal to federalism doesn’t erase his liberal record as Governor of Massachusetts.  Not only does he have a dismal record on health care; he also has a  failing record in terms of job creation.  Don’t even get me started with his record on abortion.  No thanks.

Appealing to federalism doesn’t diminish my concern that he’ll be a milquetoast in the White House.

5 comments
  1. You’d think that if Obama truly modeled the plan after “RomneyCare”, that he might have gave Mitt Romney a ring to discuss any aspects of the plan? …Didn’t happen. That health care plan was years in the making and was going to pass with or without Gov. Romney; he did what he could to veto the mandate and other aspects but was overridden.

    In the end, the people of the state got what they wanted — it passed overwhelmingly and still remains popular among the people of that very liberal state. The beauty of a federalist system is that Massachusetts can choose that route for them, not us.

    Governor Romney only served the people that elected him — I wish more politicians would do that!

    1. So the state that elected Scott Brown so he could be the 41st vote against Obamacare likes RomneyCare?

      Ok, even if that is so, popularity doesn’t mean it hasn’t been a failure – http://www.cato.org/pubs/policy_report/v30n1/cpr30n1-1.html

      Frankly, I care more about a Governor being principled than being popular.

      I don’t see the Romney who signed RomneyCare into law being against Obamacare, but he’s certainly changed his tune a lot. He actually touted the plan in 2008 so that should tell us something.

      Again I don’t care what he has said, show me what he has done.

  2. The GOP missed out big time by nominating McCain instead of Romney. Romney’s business acumen is desperately needed in DC. Suspect he will win the GOP nod in 2012 even if some conservatives do not like him. In these bad economic times people are wanting a leader who has some basic economic understandings – most of the other GOP wonks are mere politicos and probably couldn’t beat Obama.

    1. I respectfully disagree there are a number of potential candidates with executive experience. Romney is a milquetoast who can’t really can’t distinquish his governing record from Obama’s.

    2. I respectfully disagree there are a number of potential candidates with executive experience. Romney is a milquetoast who can’t really can’t distinquish his governing record from Obama’s.

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