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October 11, 2011

Romney Health Care Advisers Worked With Obama In Designing ObamaCare

You know why ObamaCare is so similar to RomneyCare? They were designed in part by some of the same people.

“The White House wanted to lean a lot on what we’d done in Massachusetts,” said Jon Gruber, an MIT economist who advised the Romney administration on health care and who attended five meetings at the Obama White House in 2009, including the meeting with the president. “They really wanted to know how we can take that same approach we used in Massachusetts and turn that into a national model.”

Romney has forcefully defended the Massachusetts law he signed, but says he is adamantly against a “one-size-fits-all national health-care system” imposed on all 50 states. “I will repeal Obamacare,” he has said. “And on day one of my administration, I will grant a waiver from Obamacare to all 50 states.”

...

Another Romney administration adviser consulted by the White House was Jon Kingsdale, a health-care expert who was appointed in 2006 by one of Romney’s Cabinet secretaries, Thomas Trimarco, to serve as executive director of the Commonwealth Health Insurance Connector Authority — the state agency charged with implementing the new Massachusetts health-care law.

The White House records show Kingsdale attended three White House meetings on health care in 2009. Another expert who attended four White House meetings on health care was John McDonough, who also had played a leading role in shaping the law signed by Romney. As the head of a health-care advocacy group in Massachusetts, McDonough was named by Romney aides as a “stakeholder” to represent consumer interests on the health-care law. McDonough later shared an “innovator in health award” with Romney and 11 others — including several top lawmakers and business leaders — given by NEHI, a leading New England health-care research group, “for their collaborative efforts in achieving Massachusetts health reform.”

Expect a fresh round of attacks on Romney in tonight's debate. Since it's on Bloomberg TV, no one will see it.

I'm pretty skeptical about how much impact this will have. As I've said all along, if people have decided to support Romney, they already know he's awful on health care ( some of us have even said it's a disqualifying defect). Is this going to be the straw that breaks the camel's back and sends them scurrying to vote for...someone else? I'm not sure why but I guess it might.

Of course for it to really hit home, someone will have to be able to make the case against him effectively in person. Tim Pawlenty whiffed when he had the chance, Rick Perry stumbled last time he tired and so far Herman Cain hasn't focused much fire on Mitt.

Tonight Perry gets a second chance but given how things have gone for his thus far, he'll probably have a killer debate...and no one will see it.


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posted by DrewM. at 09:56 AM

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