The Romney campaign underwent heavy bombardment from its own right flank this week after it flip-flopped from its longtime stance of pretending that Romneycare does not exist to promoting it as a solution for enabling laid-off workers to keep health-insurance coverage after they lose their jobs.
But now that Romney has picked Rep. Paul Ryan to be his running mate, the campaign is going to have to somehow walk back Ryan’s thorough trashing of Romneycare — including the individual mandate, which was created at the Heritage Foundation, a think tank so right wing that it sponsors Rush Limbaugh’s show — including his labeling of the system as a “fatal conceit.” Transcript follows:
C-SPAN HOST: Do you believe that the Massachusetts healthcare reform system worked? The system that Gov. Romney …
Rep. PAUL RYAN: Yeah, no, well. No, actually, I’m not a fan of the system. And I think that [garbled]. I’ve got some relatives up there in Massachusetts. My uncle’s a cardiologist in Boston, and I talk to a lot of healthcare folks up there who — what’s happening now, because costs are getting out of control, premiums are increasing in Massachusetts. And now you have bureaucracy that [garbled] all these cost controls and now rationing on the system.
So people in Massachusetts are saying, yes, we have virtually universal healthcare. I think it’s like 96 or 98 percent insured. But you see the system bursting by the seams. They see premium increases, rationing and benefit cuts. And so they’re frustrated with this system.
Number one, they’re already paying for it. They don’t want to pay for another system on top of it. That was, I think, Scott Brown’s message. They see how this idea of having the government being the single regulator of health insurance, defining what kind of health insurance you can have and then an individual mandate. It is a fatal conceit. And these kinds of systems, as we’re now seeing in Massachusetts, are unsustainable.