Mitt Romney Admits Obamacare Was Based on Romneycare—and That It Worked

Former GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney answers questions following an address in Starkville, Mississippi, on January 28.Rogelio V. Solis/AP

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Mitt Romney spent much of his campaign for president in 2012 battling “Obamneycare”: the claim that President Barack Obama’s health care initiative was based on Romneycare, the health care system Romney put in place as governor of Massachusetts.

Yet on Friday, Romney appeared finally to admit the obvious—that the Affordable Care Act was based on the Bay State’s successful health care initiative. What’s more, the man who ran on a platform of repealing Obamacare seemed to concede that the national health care law is working.

“Without Tom pushing it, I don’t think we would have had Romneycare,” Romney told the Boston Globe for an obituary of his friend, Staples founder Tom Stemberg, who passed away Friday. “Without Romneycare, I don’t think we would have Obamacare. So without Tom, a lot of people wouldn’t have health insurance.”

That was some admission, and a tremendous flip-flop for Romney. But then came—wait for it—another Romney flip-flop on this matter. On Friday afternoon, Romney took to Facebook to declare that he still opposed Obamacare:

Getting people health insurance is a good thing, and that’s what Tom Stemberg fought for. I oppose Obamacare and believe it has failed. It drove up premiums, took insurance away from people who were promised otherwise, and usurped state programs. As I said in the campaign, I’d repeal it and replace it with state-crafted plans.

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You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

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