Is ObamaCare Romney’s waterloo?

posted at 5:40 pm on September 28, 2009 by Allahpundit

Somewhere, Huckabee’s gleefully rubbing his hands together and nodding.

Three years ago, Romney was heralded for his innovative effort to institute near-universal health care in his state. But now that the issue has emerged as a partisan fault line and the Massachusetts plan has provided some guidance for Democratic reform efforts, Romney finds himself bruised and on the defensive as the GOP rallies around opposition to President Barack Obama’s plans…

It’s not just Romney’s ballot box foes who are taking him to task over his signature accomplishment as governor. His health care program has been lacerated by prominent conservative bloggers and also by the Wall Street Journal, Forbes and National Review, the conservative magazine that endorsed him in the 2008 GOP presidential primary.

“It’s Obamacare with the public option not included,” said Michael Tanner of the libertarian-oriented Cato Institute. “It’s pretty indistinguishable from what the president is proposing.”…

Romney can rightfully boast that he got much what he aimed for, since less than 3 percent of Massachusetts citizens are currently uninsured. But critics insist that the cost of Romney’s program has far exceeded the governor’s estimates and have targeted the plan as a prime example of what not to do on the national level.

Even in Massachusetts there are signs of discomfort with the plan: A June Rasmussen Reports poll found that only 26 percent of Massachusetts voters thought the state’s health care reform was a success.

The threshold question is how much of an issue ObamaCare will still be in two years when the primaries start hopping. Even if it passes, we supposedly won’t start to feel the pain until 2013; if the economy’s still in the toilet, Obama will be vulnerable and centrist Republicans might be willing to hold their noses on RomneyCare to nominate a guy with business and managerial expertise. The big problem for Mitt, I think, isn’t that he passed statewide universal health care. He can spin that in numerous ways to distinguish it from ObamaCare, e.g., it was an amazing victory for small government to keep the public option out of a bill passed in the People’s Republic of Massachusetts, it was passed in the fine tradition of state experimentation and would never be imposed nationwide by a good federalist like Romney, etc etc. The big problem is that he’ll have to spin it at all, a calamitous fate for a guy whose conveniently timed conversion on abortion a few years ago has already convinced an awful lot of Republicans that his conservatism is opportunistic. Huckabee’s going to have that same problem given his prior adventures in nanny-statism and immigration but to a lesser extent than Romney, whose reversal on the core plank of social conservatism has left him forever suspect to a lot of GOPers. The more the 2012 primaries are shaped as a test of who the truest “true conservative” is rather than a test of who has the most thoughtful/effective policy solutions (the answer may be the same in both cases), the more trouble Mitt’s in. I know which way I’m betting.

Update: For precisely the reason just stated, I think the worst thing Mitt could do is repudiate RomneyCare before the primaries. His credibility is a bigger problem for him than the programs he passed; if he turns around and says, “in hindsight, I was wrong and wish we hadn’t done it,” it’ll be a redux of his abortion reversal and he’ll crash and burn. Best to defend the program however he can.


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I suggest reading D&C 134:2 and consider rethinking your position.

Isn’t government mandated vaccination a law that is securing and protecting the life of an individual?

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 1:13 PM

One last point I want to make. By your logic and interpretation of D&C 134:2 government should enforce the word of wisdom…and a strict interpretation of the word of wisdom…looks like we should all be vegetarians. Government should also regulate consumption of sugar…right? I mean what we eat has more of an effect of our health than a vaccine right? We got to protect life right? We need to do it for the children.

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 1:59 PM

Depends on the virus. Polio has not, as far as we know, mutated to be resistant to the mainstream vaccine. Measles have. A generation of kids are now endangered by various fevers thought to be eradicated. To say nothing of the few thousands who get ill from reacting to the vaccine. It’s not a slam-dunk win.

Chris_Balsz on September 29, 2009 at 1:17 PM

The fact that some diseases mutate and others don’t is just a normal part of biology and a normal part of fighting diseases with vaccines.

That’s a weak argument against government mandated vaccination.

The benefits of requiring vaccination is greater than the risk of not requiring vaccination. Its a cost v. benefit analysis.

A few thousand children who get sick versus millions of children who are measle free is something I can accept.

If we allow parents to decide if their children will get vaccinated is a option I’m not prepared to accept since the risk of children who suffer measles and other diseases would be higher.

By requiring vaccination, the number of people who are infected is kept at a minimum while those who are healthy are kept at a maximum.

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 2:05 PM

Seat belt laws and helmet laws save lives and increase people’s freedoms…such as the freedom to stay alive and not get killed.

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 1:55 PM

So I guess requiring everyone to buy health insurance doesn’t violate freedom either, since it is for their own good?

Would a law requiring everyone to excercise every day would also increase everyone’s freedom as well?

MarkTheGreat on September 29, 2009 at 2:05 PM

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 2:05 PM

So in your opinion, the conservative position is that the individual has to be sacrificed in order to protect society?

MarkTheGreat on September 29, 2009 at 2:06 PM

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 1:55 PM

No I didn’t vote for Ron Paul…how did the “I think he is dangerous” get missed? I voted for Palin.

I wear my seat belt…but do so because I chose to. The problem is, its not the government’s business if I wear one or not! If government is protecting me from me, then I am not Free!

Am I an anarchist? No…that is a giant leap. Because I side with freedom I am an anarchist? I am a constitutionalist…you know that silly document As such I believe that men should be free. Teach a man correct principles, and let him govern himself…do you recognize that statement…hint, Joseph Smith. Where government should be involved is to make sure my liberties don’t cause someone else liberties to be less. That is government should be involved in protecting our rights…not finding ways to take our rights away.

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 2:07 PM

As I said on another thread.
The only difference between way to many conservatives and liberals, is what part of your life they want govt to control.

The only difference between communists and socialists, is that the communists are being honest about what their goals are.

MarkTheGreat on September 29, 2009 at 2:09 PM

MarkTheGreat on September 29, 2009 at 2:09 PM

+100

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 2:10 PM

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 2:05 PM

So make your case…convince parents that it is in their child’s best interest…why is that so hard? We are having judges today taking parents rights away because the parents didn’t to the general accepted practice to handle a medical issue…this is scary. As an LDS, I assume that the family is considered an important societal unit.

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 2:14 PM

I meant
As an LDS, I assume that you understand that the family is considered an important societal unit.

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 2:14 PM

One last point I want to make. By your logic and interpretation of D&C 134:2 government should enforce the word of wisdom…and a strict interpretation of the word of wisdom…looks like we should all be vegetarians.

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 1:59 PM

We wouldn’t be strict vegetarians. Go back and read D&C 89:12-13.

Secondly,when the Word of Wisdom was first proposed, abiding by the recommendations and prohibitions of the Word of Wisdom was not considered mandatory: it explicitly declares itself to be “not by commandment or constraint.

Likewise, the FDA has its recommended dietary intake of what you should eat but it doesn’t enforce or require anyone to follow the FDA guidelines.

Government should also regulate consumption of sugar…right? I mean what we eat has more of an effect of our health than a vaccine right? We got to protect life right? We need to do it for the children.

How you eat is up to you. Its your choice on how much sugar you consume or how much meat or veggies you eat. If you choose to eat poorly, its your problem.

But when you have diseases that are communicable and preventable and is not up to individual choice on whether they want the disease or not and that such diseases have an effect on a large majority of the population, the government should do what it can to ensure public health and safety such as requiring vaccination.

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 2:20 PM

That’s not what the people of Arkansas said about Mike Huckabee. They finally had a Gov. who cared about doing something to help the state. In March, 2008, when John McCain came through Arkansas to campaign, he said that Mike Huckabee still had over 65% approval rating in Ark. and that’s a Democratic state.

If you think Mike Huckabee has “class envy” for anybody richer than him, then he would be envious of everybody. LOL He has lived all his life with people who are richer than he is. Can’t you accept the fact that Mitt Romney is the one who looked down on Huckabee? I saw Mitt Romney on a Hannity show during the primary and he made this comment with a snear in his face, “I don’t see what those people see in Mike Huckabee”. You don’t call that arrogant and offensive? He was saying who could like this “hick”? He didn’t even know MH, but he wasn’t good enough in his mind to run for Pres. Like you, I don’t care what other people also said, I saw this for myself. Don’t you suppose MH saw it too? How would you have felt if you had been in his shoes? Mitt Romney used his money to try and buy the nomination, but the people saw through him.

As far as comparing Mitt Romney’s record to MH, you are the one who said Mike Huckabee was as socialist as Romney. No way he was or ever wil be.

VFT on September 29, 2009 at 2:22 PM

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 2:20 PM

How is it that what I eat is my issue, but not wearing a seat belt I am going to hell?

( On the word of wisdom… 12 Yea, flesh also of beasts and of the fowls of the air, I, the Lord, have ordained for the use of man with thanksgiving; nevertheless they are to be used sparingly;
13 And it is pleasing unto me that they should not be used, only in times of winter, or of cold, or famine
….. let me ask you, is there a winter here in America? Or famine? No, we can buy veggies and bread anytime of year. This is why I said a strict interpretation of the word of wisdom. For the record, I eat meat. )

Your hysteria is allowing the government to usurp our freedom. You might want to take Ben Franklins advice…”They that can give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Make your case with parents…most if not all will vaccine their child if you make your case.

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 2:30 PM

“Mitt Romney used his money to try and buy the nomination” ya, no class envy there…none…move along people, nothing to see here

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Conservative Samizdat on September 29, 2009 at 2:20 PM

Oh and as far as mandatory…yes when the Church first came out with the word of wisdom, it was meant as advice. But now its mandatory to be in good standing with the church. The real question is Samizdat, is should the government enforce the word of wisdom, because it protects life?

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 2:33 PM

VFT on September 29, 2009 at 2:22 PM

Romney didn’t try to ban smoking nationwide, and then flip flop on it when he received pressure…d’oh

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 2:35 PM

Conservative Voice,

As I was reading your posts about freedom and our children..is there something in the health bill or another bill that Obama wants that has the Govt coming in to the home and counseling parents on how to raise our children. Do you know what I’m referring to? I heard something about it and I was appalled that they would try to tell parents how to raise their children. Now if the parents asked for it is one thing, but I don’t think this was just when they asked.

VFT on September 29, 2009 at 3:12 PM

However, Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor and 2008 Republican presidential contender, said Obama was right to make an appearance.

“In the current environment, the presence of a head of state is important to get the Games,” Romney, who headed the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah, said, noting that former British Prime Minister Tony Blair had set a new standard by personally lobbying for his country’s succesful 2012 Olympic bid.

This doesn’t sound like a guy looking to run.

Chris_Balsz on September 29, 2009 at 3:57 PM

Romney will never be president, thanks to the stubborn religious right. He will split the party like Perot did. They will vote for Huckabee and we will have another four years of this crap.

cannonball on September 28, 2009 at 6:00 PM

I’ve seen I don’t know how many posts just like that, only some much more crude, here over the past year.

ddrintn on September 28, 2009 at 10:50 PM

Wow, that’s really “vicious”. I’m outraged!

Buy Danish on September 29, 2009 at 11:39 AM

As I said, do a search. That’s only one from this thread alone. There’ve been many, many such statements made by Mitt supporters here. As, um, you damn well know.

Anyway, so much for saying that the argument is never used by those virtuous Mitt fans.

ddrintn on September 29, 2009 at 4:48 PM

ddrintn on September 29, 2009 at 4:48 PM

There is a big difference between arguing that anti-Mormon bigotry from Huck supporters poisons the well and enables the Democrat Party, and actual anti-”Fundi” rhetoric. What you cited is not venomous, it’s just an analytical observation.

I followed the primaries very closely here, and I can tell you that the anti-Mormon comments were numerous and vicious.

f.w.i.w., I am not a Mormon (not even close), but I was appalled by much of it, and disgusted with Huckabee’s oh-so-innocent implicit encouragement of these tactics (which he piled on on top of his pathetic class warfare games).

Buy Danish on September 29, 2009 at 5:11 PM

Buy Danish on September 29, 2009 at 5:11 PM

I remember those brawls as well…which is why I will not, absolutely not, vote for Huck. Its personal.

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 5:23 PM

I have been on the Huck sites and because you have to sign in during registration, I only knew of maybe one or two people who were even on this thread during the primaries. It wasn’t fun to read all the negative comments about MH. So if there were anti-Mormon comments on here, it probably wasn’t from MH supporters. I didn’t read any anti-Mormon comments on his sites, and I read two sites every day for the past 1 1/2 years. Do ASSUME that we were against him because of his religion. As I have stated, we are against him because he has no principles and cannot be trusted.

The MSM even went along with this fallacy. There might be Christians against him for his religion, but not me or anybody from his site made those comments. Don’t you think we could have other reasons for not liking Mitt Romney? We wouldn’t have said anti-Mormon things because we wouldn’t have wanted that to reflect on MH.

When I went on Townhall or some other sites, it was the Rombots who always made fun of MH and his religion. They acted like the bigots. When I tried to state positions that I didn’t like about Mitt Romney…well it has to be because I’m a bigot about the Mormon religion. They could not imagine that Mr. Perfect could do no wrong! Because you say it or other LDS people say it doesn’t make it so.

VFT on September 29, 2009 at 5:36 PM

Of course, I meant Don’t assume that we were against him because of his religion.

I feel sad that lots of people on here have had the same trash spoken about Sarah Palin. Shelby has commented many times about Sarah Palin and witchcraft…what’s that all about. If Mike Huckabee doesn’t get the nomination, I and all or most of the MH supporters will support Sarah Paln if she runs. Sarah Palin had many lawsuits against her in Alaska, and Mike Huckabee had lawsuits against him in Arkansas. He was not convicted…he had some Dems who just wanted to make him look bad.

VFT on September 29, 2009 at 5:43 PM

VFT on September 29, 2009 at 5:36 PM

While I will admit that many people used the bigot card too much during the primaries…I experienced a lot of bigotry here on Hot Air and Newsbusters.
I can’t say what happened on Mike’s own web clan, or on townhall, I can only tell you how it was here and newsbusters. It was nasty.

Fact is, Huck and Mitt are so close to being the same guy…with Mitt being more conservative in some areas, and Mike being more conservative in other areas…sum total, they were about the same. Except for two things, that solidified my anti-Huck. This is why people conclude btw that bigotry was involved, because there wasn’t enough substance to claim Mike was more conservative.

1. When he gave the primary votes to McCain to stop Romney at the pass…that just exposed his weasel personality and his pettiness.
2. His class envy plays.

I know, you deny there was any class envy on Huck’s part. Could it be because you have the same lens to view life from? I can’t say…all I know is he engaged in it several times enough to make my gut sick.

Conservative Voice on September 29, 2009 at 6:11 PM

As I have stated, we are against him because he has no principles and cannot be trusted.

Unlike Mike Huckabee who, for example, stooped so low as to sneer at Mitt as an elitist because he cut the skin off his chicken during a campaign stop at a Chic fil A – while Huck’s own diet website talked about how one should cut the skin off one’s chicken!

There might be Christians against him for his religion, but not me or anybody from his site made those comments.
VFT on September 29, 2009 at 5:36 PM

It’s true you were not among the commenters. Many of the comments did not come from Huck supporters, but some of them did.

Buy Danish on September 29, 2009 at 6:38 PM

There is a big difference between arguing that anti-Mormon bigotry from Huck supporters poisons the well and enables the Democrat Party, and actual anti-”Fundi” rhetoric. What you cited is not venomous, it’s just an analytical observation.

Buy Danish on September 29, 2009 at 5:11 PM

An analytical observation would’ve supplied some data. A lot of Romney supporters have never gotten over the fact that McCain chose some dumb chillbilly as VP rather than their guy, who would’ve helped McCain more to victory. That’s not an analytical observation, just an intuitive one.

ddrintn on September 29, 2009 at 7:41 PM

Conservative Voice,

Thank you for letting me explain what really happened with Mike Huckabee…I don’t know if you believe me, but trust me I don’t ever intentionally lie about anything. So what I am telling you is from what I have read and know about MH.

I wanted to explain what Mike Huckabee said happened in the VA caucus. I know it looked like he made a deal with McCain, but he didn’t After the first round, Mitt was ahead but didn’t have the 50%+1 that it took to win the caucus. Mike Huckabee was second and John McCain was down the list, so he didn’t have a chance of winning there. Ron Paul was also down the list and didn’t have a chance of winning the caucus. After the 1st round Ron Paul came up to Mike Huckabee and said he would tell his supporters to vote for Mike Huckabee if Mike would give his the delegates. I’m sure the McCain voters would pick MH because they didn’t want Romney to win the caucus. That’s what really happened at that Caucus. As you probably know, people making deals happens all the time on the 2nd round. But MH did NOT make a deal with John McCain. Remember the other canidates did not like Mitt Romney. I know all the Rombots thought MH made a deal with John McCain, but that’s not true. Remember I wasn’t there, but Mike Huckabee told what really happened on an interview or video or whatever I can’t remember,and that’s the only way I would know what went on behind the scenes.

I think there have been many very petty things said about MH, such as, from Shelby, she always tells everybody on all sites, that Mike Huckabee threatened to shoot Obama. Mike immediately apologized to the public, and personally to Obama, but Obama knew he was just joking. We got a lot of e-mails on MH’s site, but lots of them said they knew he was joking. Buy Danish, don’t you think that was a very petty thing for the Rombots to complain about. We don’t even know if that really happened, and even if it did MH could have been joking.

Can the Mike Huckabee supporters make a deal with the Palin supporters on this site, that we won’t put down Sarah Palin on any site if they will not put down Mike Huckabee?

It is absolutely true that the Christians on MH’s two websites never put down the Mormon religion. That doesn’t mean we don’t say what we think is true about Romney, but even that not much anymore. I think that the Rombots assumed that a lot of things Mike Huckabee said was “code” against the Mormon religion, but that’s ridiculous. Don’t you think MH would know that if he really put down other religions that it would hurt him? He is far too smart to say something against another religion on purpose…of course, he made that 1st mistake with the reporter, but I think he learned a huge lesson. I think he was very surprised when he entered the race in Iowa how every single thing he said was scrutinized and analyzed and he soon learned to watch what he said.

VFT on September 29, 2009 at 8:29 PM

Conservative Voice,

No I don’t have class envy..I am happy when people can achieve success in life (that is legally). LOL I grew up low middle-class with seven brothers & sisters (good Catholic family), and all of them have more money and successful than I am. I am happy for them, but I happy for what I have because I am blessed by God.

I just wish Mike Huckabee would be given a chance by the Washington Establishment and they would stop treating him like he doesn’t exist. If they just treated him half as good as they treat Romney, that would be fine. (that’s not class envy).

Over at the race42012.com website they actually say Romney’s a moderate and that’s who the Establishment wants to win. Can you imagine, we had John McCain who always tried to get the Independents and Moderate Democrats instead of trying to secure the Republican voters first. The also admitted that the Establishment “shunned” Huckabee in 2008 because he was pro-life and a right-winger. They also admitted that they just use the Social Conservatives for votes, but they don’t want them in office. I don’t know if this information was from the Establishment or just there opinions, but it sure is the way they do treat MH now and did treat MH during the last primary. They treat Sarah Palin much better in that they at least acknowledge she exists, unlike MH. They haven’t figured out yet getting back to Social Conservative views and the platform the Republican Party stands for: small govt. military support, lower taxes, etc. will be the key to winning against Obama. I do think Mike Huckabee has a good chance to win because he is gaining new supporters all the time, even Independents and Dems, because they see what he believes on the issues on his show, “Huckabee”. They froze him out in 2008, so a lot of people didn’t know who he was.

If you think it’s okay for Romney to change his positions on abortion (which is a VERY important issued for me), then why isn’t it okay for MH to change his positions on Illegal immigrants? He was the only Republican candidate who signed a pledge (about mid-way in the campaign) to not grant amnesty to the illegals. I think when he ran for Presidency, it affected how he thought because you have to consider the good of all the country. He wanted the children of the illegals to get their citizenship to qualify for the scholarships they wanted. Nobody ever mentioned that part of the deal.

VFT on September 29, 2009 at 9:11 PM

Yes, a thousand times yes. Romney is McCain with nice hair. PLEEESSE somebody tell him to stop sucking up the O2. We need some fresh blood in the race for president.

Mike Pence?

archer52 on September 29, 2009 at 11:18 PM

People shouldn’t get worked up about Mitt – he’s not a player and won’t be a major factor at all in the primaries in 2012.

And the reason is – he’s thrown in his lot with the GOP Ayatollahs. We’ve seen remarkable energy coming from the GOP base this summer, and it’s only going to grow. We have not seen a corresponding increase in energy from the Ayatollahs, nor from Mitt. It’s clear they are “sitting the fence” waiting for the base to win the battle for them – then they’ll jump in with their shiny armor and unbloodied swords to declare they were behind the real warriors all along! Nay – they’ll even claim they were the INSPIRATION for those warriors!

But the people won’t be fooled. The next GOP nominee will be an individual with blood on their face – someone who stood and fought with the base through the hard times. It won’t be someone with a starched white collar.

Names that come to mind? Big names would be folks like Palin, Huck, Rick Perry, I think even pseudo-Ayatollah Jim Demint has a shot because he’s at least shed the white collar to don flannel and march with the Liberty Movement. Don’t be surprised if some unknown comes out of nowhere to lead the GOP in 2012 – but it will be someone who’s out there on the battlefield RIGHT NOW doing their part.

I can’t wait until all the moderates, who’ve done nothing but sit on their arses while the Liberty folks fought successfully to defeat ObamaCare … I can’t wait till those RINOS start complaining about who we’re going to nominate in 2012. It’s coming folks – and we’re all going to laugh in unison at them when they start crying about nominating Liberty Movement type with “narrow appeal”. That will be the time we remind them that they did NOTHING to help us in our hour of need.

But I’ll state again – Mitt won’t be a factor. Oh sure – he’ll be the dude carrying the flag of the Ayatollahs – but they won’t be significant at all in the next election. The GOP doesn’t belong to them anymore.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2009 at 8:54 AM

An analytical observation would’ve supplied some data. A lot of Romney supporters have never gotten over the fact that McCain chose some dumb chillbilly as VP rather than their guy, who would’ve helped McCain more to victory. That’s not an analytical observation, just an intuitive one.

ddrintn on September 29, 2009 at 7:41 PM

Analysis has to include data? Really? Do you just make stuff up as you go along? In any case, your newly advanced theory does not explain all the anti-Mormon bigotry which occurred during the Primary season before Palin was chosen.

Buy Danish on September 30, 2009 at 11:42 AM

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