Santorum blasts Gingrich over 'Romneycare'
March 10th, 2012
08:01 PM ET
3 years ago

Santorum blasts Gingrich over 'Romneycare'

Springfield, Missouri (CNN) – It's a common aspect of Republican Rick Santorum's stump: attacking Mitt Romney for creating - and then "recommending" - "Romneycare" to President Barack Obama.

But Saturday, fresh off his projected win in the Kansas caucuses, Santorum added that GOP presidential rival Newt Gingrich is "honestly not a whole lot better."

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"For 20 years when I was pushing medical savings accounts, he was pushing a federal mandate for health insurance," Santorum said. "And when 'Romneycare' passed, he sent out a glowing statement talking about how this wonderful bill had just passed in Massachusetts."

Santorum argues that Obama, Gingrich and Romney all line up on the same side when it comes to their support for an individual mandate.

The campaign points to a 2006 newsletter Gingrich wrote for his consulting firm, the Center for Health Transformation, in which he praised Romney's Massachusetts health care reform.

"The health bill that Governor Romney signed into law this month has tremendous potential to effect major change in the American health system," Gingrich wrote, according to the report.

Also in the newsletter, Gingrich expressed his support for the individual mandate in Massachusetts, but only for those making at least $54,000 a year. And while he commended Romney's effort in building the plan, he acknowledged the bill will likely face "tremendous scrutiny" from those who doubt the law will work.

Gingrich has since admitted he was "wrong" in supporting Romney's plan and has now become one of its major critics on the campaign trail.

"In retrospect we were wrong because what happens, once you go to a mandate, you have turned so much power over to the government that the politicians rather than the doctors end up defining health care," Gingrich told CNN's Wolf Blitzer in December. "So it was a mistake."

Santorum on Saturday attempted to draw the distinction that he is the only one who supports individual freedom.

"Why would the Republican Party - on the issue that won us the 2010 election - nominate either of them who are uniquely unqualified to make the case to the American public," Santorum said, adding that "they both were for top-down, government-run health care."

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Filed under: 2012 • Health care • Missouri • Mitt Romney • Newt Gingrich
soundoff (111 Responses)
  1. Foreverwar

    Gingrich covered in a blast of santorum sounds really gross.

    March 11, 2012 12:16 am at 12:16 am |
  2. FRANK FROM LAS VEGAS

    Little Ricky and his blind followers just don't get it, the individual mandate is the correct answer to the health insurance question and unfortunately little Ricky has his vocal right wing nuts scaring the other two down, which is not saying much for them either. Little Ricky would rather have people die without health insurance or sponge off of the rest of us. His other big lie is that it's a government take over of the health care system. THE BIG LIE. There is no public option, all of the required health insurance is from PRIVATE COMPANIES, not the government. But little Ricky continues that lie to his supporters who I guess are just too lazy or dumb to do just a little research to find out that there is no government take over and that little Ricky is just one big liar. So one of the largest problems is that the other candidates have lost their spine to stand up for what they know is the truth, they let little Ricky and his blind followers back them down.

    March 11, 2012 12:44 am at 12:44 am |
  3. Joan

    Who is telling the truth???

    March 11, 2012 12:51 am at 12:51 am |
  4. mommytwice

    why, oh why does anyone care what this extreme right wing religious fanatic thinks??

    March 11, 2012 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  5. dan5404

    He can blast all he wants, but it's all crap. It is the greatest thing that's happened to health care since Medicare. Insurance companies have falsely blamed huge increases in premiums on the law, cancelled sick people's policies, and companies hve been dropping employees benefits as often as they can and use the GOP to keep their gravy wagon going. They started blaming Affordable Health Care (there is no such thing as Obama care, that's a GOP propaganda ophrase))right at the start, but most of it doesn' even go into effect until 2014. The GOP continues to attack the middle class, poor and elderly, not to mention minorities and women.

    March 11, 2012 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  6. fandancy

    WOW

    A loser blasting a loser.

    March 11, 2012 01:10 am at 1:10 am |
  7. T'sah from Virginia

    ►"For 20 years when I was pushing medical savings accounts, [ginGRINCH] was pushing a federal mandate for health insurance," Santorum said. "And when 'Romneycare' passed, he sent out a glowing statement talking about how this wonderful bill had just passed in Massachusetts."◄

    Well – excluding Paul, 2 out of the 3 candidates trying to become President either passed a Health Care program with a mandate or agreed with one... If you count President Obama, that makes 3. Hmm, that sounds like a majority to me. The only problem is the fact that 2 of them, don't want to own up to it and would rather lie to their followers about it! What a shame!

    Obama 2012 – The Only Trusted Way Forward!!

    March 11, 2012 01:14 am at 1:14 am |
  8. BB

    Go Rick!!!! Santorum 2012!!!!

    March 11, 2012 01:20 am at 1:20 am |
  9. steven harnack

    For the life of me I can NOT put together how everyone having health insurance puts the government in any way "in charge of health care"! Can one of these wingnuts please explain it to me? By that logic I guess that the 60% of Americans who DO have insurance now are getting their health care from the government, right? What it is is more psycho babble from the Republicans aimed at the people who can't be bothered to think or are of the opinion that thinking makes you an"elite snob".

    March 11, 2012 01:36 am at 1:36 am |
  10. Marry

    Ok, now that the GOP/TP, their followers and candidates know so well what is „wrong“ with the new “top-down, government-run health care” (and as Santorum knows very well, to describe it in such a way is incorrect and a lie to start with) I would like to know in a bit more detail (ones he guts "Obama -care") about how his “medical savings accounts” would work for all the people needing desperately reliable health insurance? Ones the “savings” are used up you are back to square one? All I read about his “plans” is BS because, since when does a person know what their “unique health care needs” will be one day?
    President Obama 2012!!!

    March 11, 2012 01:46 am at 1:46 am |
  11. mommazona

    Don't everyone just in here at one time to respond :/

    March 11, 2012 03:10 am at 3:10 am |
  12. Dvet

    Well sanitation you take out the trash but yall got to nominate someone and he has the most money.

    March 11, 2012 03:24 am at 3:24 am |
  13. stranger in an increasingly strange land

    I love that the Republicans are almost to a man against affordable health care for middle and lower class Americans. Their rich friends can afford any health care they want. If you are a young single Mom working as waitress, as is my Grandaughter, you cannot always afford health care, day care, food, rent and utilities. Obama's plan may not be perfect but it will make it easier for her to protect her little family at a reasonable price.

    March 11, 2012 03:40 am at 3:40 am |
  14. Jib76

    Every day TV ads run saying that oil and natural gas can create 1 million new jobs safely and cleanly in America. Wind, solar, geothermal and biomass power generation creates five times as many jobs per unit of power than coal or natural gas does—good jobs, with learning potential, that can’t be outsourced. Energy efficiency programs create ten times as many jobs. These renewable and sustainable energy sources are far cleaner than coal, oil, or natural gas.

    March 11, 2012 03:42 am at 3:42 am |
  15. Jib76

    Wind, solar, geothermal and biomass power generation creates five times as many jobs per unit of power than coal or gas does—good jobs, with learning potential, that can’t be outsourced. Energy efficiency programs create ten times as many jobs.

    March 11, 2012 03:55 am at 3:55 am |
  16. RonaldDPerry

    I would recommend this health insurance plan i found through Penny_Health to anyone with a growing family who is looking to minimize their medical expenses.

    March 11, 2012 04:14 am at 4:14 am |
  17. ourjungle

    They battle hard, through the long days and nights, month after month,and from the dust a GOP junk yard dog will emerge....to face the final battle, not a whimper,nor a whine will you hear.....or, we could sent in Santorum.

    March 11, 2012 04:32 am at 4:32 am |
  18. jb1963

    What Rick was preaching 20 years ago is the reason he cant be elected now. He is a fool who wants just to be in power over woman

    March 11, 2012 04:47 am at 4:47 am |
  19. Namejkane fl live from teapublican moon base no taxes, no regulation no health care, free gas.

    Keep listening to the republican propaganda that health insurance is a bad think. It's mostly the people that need it the most that get all rilled up and also the dumb hicks that believe all the lies from the likes of that windbag lindbag and the bafoons in the teaparty. I want obamacare and the benifets of health insurance. Dem landslide coming in Nov, thanks teaparty and obstructionest republican morons!!!

    March 11, 2012 06:26 am at 6:26 am |
  20. aaron

    We get it.....Santorum wants women to drop babies until they can't have any more....make birth control illegal. Why he'd want anyone to breed with Gingrich though is cruel and unfathomable.

    March 11, 2012 06:34 am at 6:34 am |
  21. Ploomb

    The ayatollah Santorum has spoken.

    March 11, 2012 06:47 am at 6:47 am |
  22. TheNashRambler

    If a Republican candidate like Santorum is going to make such a big deal about a STATE mandate (as apposed to a FEDERAL mandate; yes, there is a difference), then I want him to run on getting rid of other State mandates around the country. Such as the need to carry car insurance. Or State mandates for education. The list goes on.

    The fact that 70% of Massachusetts Republicans voted for Romney (many of them must like Romneycare) is pretty telling to me that at a State level, the healthcare system that was put in place is working out ok for most of the people in Massachusetts.

    March 11, 2012 06:48 am at 6:48 am |
  23. belindar

    Well it looks like Gingrich and Romney art double-teaming Santorum since he is closing the gap. I wonder if they are in cahoots. The statement was made about Romney and Paul, but it looks like Romney has another co-conspirator, namely, Newt.

    March 11, 2012 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
  24. Reddog9500

    His previous support of "Romneycare" is only one of many reasons why Newt Gingrich is "uniquely unqualified" to be nominated for President by the Republican Party. I can think of many, many more reasons, (such as the fact that he is morally bankrupt and an unethical windbag, and that's just for starters).

    March 11, 2012 07:13 am at 7:13 am |
  25. Marie MD

    Obviously it's sad to have a disabled child but it must be nice, sanatorium, to be able to take care of such child without the need of medical insurance and be able to pay a $1M a year on her care.
    The rest of us, the 99%, don't have the luxury of having that kind of money and we need insurance coverage or we die, but wait, that's the rethug way according to the teapublikans at one of your debates.
    They cheered for a man to die instead of getting medical help. Stay classy rethugs!

    March 11, 2012 07:13 am at 7:13 am |
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