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Conservatives React To Romney USA Today Op-Ed

Republican Presidential frontrunner Mitt Romney is taking heat for a 2009 USA Today op-ed and three videos uncovered by BuzzFeed advocating that President Obama use RomneyCare as a model for national health reform. Here's a roundup of the reaction.

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Andrew McCarthy of National Review

This seems very significant. A number of us have expressed concerns that Romney cannot effectively confront Obama on Obamacare, the wrongheadedness and unpopularity of which make it the Republicans’ most crucial issue in the campaign. In response, Romney posits that he is a Tenth Amendment guy who saw what he was doing as right for his state, and perhaps other states, but certainly not a national model to be adopted at the federal level. For what it’s worth, I’ve contended that those claims are utterly unpersuasive (some are downright frivolous). But that hardly matters now. The op-ed demonstrates that Mitt regarded Romneycare precisely as a model the federal government ought to adopt, and that the ‘tax penalties’ by which Massachusetts’s individual mandate are enforced were a good fit for Congress and the Obama administration to impose by federal law.”

Erick Erickson of Redstate

Friends, if Mitt Romney is the nominee, we will be unable to fight Obama on an issue that 60% of Americans agree with us on.

Allah Pundit of Hot Air

Again, watch the clip. Romney’s always thought of the mandate as a conservative measure aimed at making people take personal responsibility for their own health care. (As did some prominent conservatives, Gingrich included, before the issue became toxic under Obama.) It’s shocking that, as late as summer 2009 — actually, even later per the “keep the good” bit linked above — he’d misread the mood of the base badly enough to think he could sell them on the right-wing merits of compulsory health-care purchases, but then that’s what makes him Mitt Romney. And the subsequent flip to the position that of course the mandate is unconstitutional — that’s what really makes him Mitt Romney.

Joe Scarborough says Romney is lying about previous support for the mandate.

View this video on YouTube

Eric Cantor says Romney will repeal ObamaCare.

View this video on YouTube

Rick Santorum Implies Romney campaign removed the op-ed from the USA Today site.

View this video on YouTube

Andrew Kaczynski is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Andrew Kaczynski at

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