Santorum hits Romney over health care
March 14th, 2011
07:43 PM ET
3 years ago

Santorum hits Romney over health care

(CNN) - Potential 2012 presidential candidate Rick Santorum went after another possible candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, over Romney's support for the universal health care law in his state.

In an interview Monday with the Boston Globe, the former Pennsylvania senator said the state law and current federal laws "tend to drive employers out of the private sector plans because they're expensive and more people end up on the government plan."

"Ultimately, it's a failure," Santorum said.

There are similarities between Romney's plan and the current health care law signed by President Barack Obama, including the individual mandate that requires all residents, with some exceptions, to have health insurance or pay a tax penalty. The former 2008 presidential contender has received criticism over the plan from other conservatives including former Arkansas governor and potential presidential candidate Mike Huckabee. More recently Obama took a political shot at the governor, saying he agreed with the Massachusetts plan.

Romney addressed his record in a March speech, explaining the law was a "state plan intended to address problems that were in many ways unique to Massachusetts."

"Our experiment wasn't perfect. Some things worked. Some didn't. And some things I'd change," Romney said. "One thing I would never do is to usurp the constitutional power of states with a one-size-fits-all federal takeover."

But Santorum, who touted himself as a "consistent conservative" on social and economic issues, said the issues don't "line up particularly well for Gov. Romney this time."

"I feel we need someone who is a strong, principled conservative who believes not in government mandates, not in government control of the health care system, but in a patient-centered approach to health care," Santorum said.

– CNN's Steve Brusk contributed to this report


Filed under: 2012 • Health care • Mitt Romney • Rick Santorum
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. usualone

    The plan has barely started and this guy is saying it is a failure. He has nothing to offer at all except that he is a nice looking man, but unfortunately one who lives in years bygone.

    March 14, 2011 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  2. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Rick 'Rump Man' Santorum is a complete failure who is not electable. He is just as abrasive as Newt, Haley, Michelle, Sharia, Trumpkin, Little Timmy, Sarah, and the lying Baptist minister Huckabee. It is time to put an end to the republican war against 95% of Americans.

    March 14, 2011 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  3. Name king

    You know what, I'd rather to see Romney run against Obama, rather than this guy, he don't seem to have any baggage as Romney, his only down fall is he seem to be more of a conservative than Romney is. Because you can't be a rabid conservative and be governor in pennsylvania. Romney is just fake prosanified to the third degree. He flows where the waters takes him. Then lies if he think he went down the wrong river bed. The thing that will ultimately slam the repugs, is their Trickle down economics, and their shift to the right to accommodate their rabid lunatic base.

    March 14, 2011 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  4. Obamacare = Romneycare v1.01

    OK, but exavtly what kind of plan, if any, has Santorum ever come up with?

    March 14, 2011 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  5. fideauxdon

    Does anyone care what "Man on Dog" Santorum believes? He couldn't even hold on to his Congressional seat. He's basically a male Christine O'Donnell, who can't do anything but run for office.

    March 14, 2011 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  6. johnnyD

    Absolutely one of the scariest men in politics.

    March 14, 2011 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  7. kari

    Awesome! And so entertaining. Super Conservative vs. Conservative. Can't wait to see who wins the battle to be the ultimate conservative. Contrary to the inane ramblings on the web, a right winger will not win the general election.

    March 14, 2011 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  8. jules sand-perkins

    Neither Santorum nor Romney would be half the president Obama has been.
    The Republicans don't have a candidate.

    March 14, 2011 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  9. Lenmsith

    Santorum must be in the need for money and is running for President so that he will get him big bucks in speaking fees and books and interviews. Maybe he will be just like Palin and have his own show. Sad to see such a dip thinking about running for President of our great country.

    March 14, 2011 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  10. T'sah from Virginia

    They SMILE in your face
    And all the time they want to take your place
    The BACK-STABBERS – BACK-STABBERS

    We really do not need President Obama out there fighting against the RepubliCAN'Ts – they're going to beat themselves up!! I guess they "criticize" President Obama so much they know the American people are TIRED OF IT. Now, they're going to beat up each other!!

    Santorium is a LOSER – poll numbers below 1% and he has a NERVE to criticize someone!!!! He has NO chance of being President and he NO chance of becoming the nominee!!! Keep selling those books!!!

    March 14, 2011 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  11. jules sand-perkins

    What a shame to watch the Republican Party die.
    They need to stop trying to sell a religion that can't even bring in tithes and offerings to pay its employees, much less swing votes against realistic thinkers.

    March 14, 2011 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  12. Republican's are fraud's !

    Didn't just a few month's ago they call it innovative and sensible ! But when they are going against Romney they call it a failure ! Hypocrites ! Poor Romney, he will never have a chance with these cavemen ! He should just hang it up because he's not dumb enough for the Republican's ! They will end up putting a lunatic up like Palin or Bachman or a corporate shill like most of the other's and will end up getting their clock cleaned by Obama ! The whole field of Republican's is weak ! Obama will win a second term for sure ! I can't see anyone they put up being able to out maneuver Obama !

    March 14, 2011 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  13. George Guadiane - Austerlitz, NY

    Let the Republican savagery begin.
    Republicans, with the help of the TEA Party wing will rip the insides out of the party and eat them with some fava beans and a nice Chianti.

    March 14, 2011 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  14. OneMoreTime

    And, "I feel" that ultimately you are a failure. Prayers for Japan.

    March 14, 2011 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  15. PaulC

    I am in favor of smaller government. Let have a constitutional amendment to cut the Senate to 50 free loaders and the House to 200 hacks.
    I assure you the constitutional amendment would pass all 50 states in record time.

    March 14, 2011 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  16. A keen observer

    Isn't is fun watching the republicans cannibalize each other. Santorum's "strong, principled conservative" doesn't exist in this world. It has been conservatives who have exploded the national debt starting with Reagan though they try to blame everyone else. I'm surprised how stupid the voters are who put these idiots back in power in the House. God save us from religious fanatics!

    March 14, 2011 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  17. once upon a horse

    oh boy here we go......"first shot fired across the bow" no matter what happens in the end these 2102ers going after each other for the "golden ring" is going to be pure entertainment and I plan to enjoy EVERY WAKING MOMENT of it.

    March 14, 2011 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |