Health reform law an example of compassion, Romney says
September 26th, 2012
07:18 PM ET
6 years ago

Health reform law an example of compassion, Romney says

(CNN) – Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney pointed Wednesday to the Massachusetts health reform law he signed – and particularly its coverage of children – when asked about his compassion for middle class people.

Romney raised the law in an interview with NBC News. Conservatives have criticized Romney for supporting the law, which is similar to the health reform law signed by President Barack Obama. Romney has said his law was constitutional and appropriate in Massachusetts, but was not meant to be implemented nationally.

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"I think throughout this campaign as well, we talked about my record in Massachusetts, don't forget - I got everybody in my state insured," Romney told NBC News, according to a quote on their website. "One hundred percent of the kids in our state had health insurance.

"I don't think there's anything that shows more empathy and care about the people of this country than that kind of record," he continued.

Minutes later, however, Romney railed against Obama's health law, which bears similarities to the Massachusetts provision.

At a campaign rally in Toledo, Romney reaffirmed his commitment to "repeal Obamacare and replace it with real health care reform."

"Obamacare is really Exhibit No. 1 of the president's political philosophy, and that is that government knows better than people how to run your lives," he said.

Romney has largely avoided speaking about his Massachusetts health care plan on the campaign trail, since it served in part as a blueprint for Obama's sweeping health care reform, which Republicans oppose. Last week, Romney joked that Obama often jabs him as "the grandfather of Obamacare," saying "I don't think he meant that as a compliment but I'll take it."

Last month, Romney brought up the law when defending himself against accusations that he's waging a "war on women."

"Look, I'm the guy that was able to get health care for all of the women and men in my state," Romney said on Fox News. "They're just talking about it at the federal level. We actually did something, and we did it without cutting Medicare and without raising taxes."

At the rally Wednesday in Toledo, Ohio, Romney explained that "government has a role" in helping people.

"We have people that are hurting, we have people who are disabled and people who are poor, they need our help and they receive our help," he said. "We're a charitable people."

"So we're going to help those that need our help, we're a compassionate people," he continued. "At the same time, at the same time, we're going to insist that these people have the opportunity for work if they can carry out work, if they're able-bodied. Because we are not going to create a society of dependence on government."

- CNN Political Producer Rachel Streitfeld contributed to this report

Filed under: 2012 • Health care • Mitt Romney
soundoff (127 Responses)
  1. Michael

    Hey Mitt, you can't have it both ways; You can't say "I'll kill Obamacare dead on my first day" and then turn around and tout Romneycare for political brownie points when they are literally the same damn thing!

    September 26, 2012 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  2. Marty, FL

    Flip-flop Romney unfortunately lacks credibility, vowing to repeal our healthcare when he previously said he wanted a national mandate plan, now supposedly doesn't? Which way is up?

    September 26, 2012 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  3. dishington

    Flash! This just in!!! Mitt Romney cannot see his own reflection in a mirror. This level of cluelessness surpasses ironic – we are dealing with a narcissist supreme.

    September 26, 2012 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  4. Obamacare = Obama cares about the young, elderly, poor and disabled. Romneycare = "I don't care about the poor"!

    "iI don't think there's anything that shows more empathy and care about the people of this country than that kind of record," he continued."

    It does say a lot for your empathy THEN, but why has the "severely conservative" Romney of 2012 promised to "repeal and replace" the same healthcare reform on a national basis?

    September 26, 2012 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  5. Asturiano

    So if it's good for Mass why isn't it good for America. Should we send our uninsured to emergency rooms for free medical care at millions in costs. I thought he was suppose to be a businessman.

    September 26, 2012 08:42 pm at 8:42 pm |
  6. Wake up people!

    Flip flop, flip flop, flip flop....please vote for me, I'm nice!

    September 26, 2012 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  7. John the Historian

    Willard the planet kolob awaits you. Anne can get her health care on this fictional planet.

    September 26, 2012 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  8. Sam

    So Romney highlights MA healthcare law when it is convenient for him and slams presidents' when he is among his repub cronies1

    September 26, 2012 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  9. MikeB

    RomneyCare is definitely different than ObamaSnare.

    September 26, 2012 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  10. Liz the First

    So the people of Mass. deserve good healthcare but not the rest of the country? so much for compassion! more folks need to speak out about how crummy he was as governor.

    September 26, 2012 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  11. MaryM

    lol, Romneycare equals Obamacare. Sooooooooooo romney are you for Obamacare

    September 26, 2012 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  12. Woman In California

    "I don't think there's anything that shows more empathy and care about the people of this country than that kind of record," he continued.
    Okay, then why did it take you so long to come out the closet about it?

    At the rally Wednesday in Toledo, Ohio, Romney explained that "government has a role" in helping people.

    Since when? Since you got caught about your 47% "victim" comments?

    It has got to be embarassing to come on these Boards everyday and defend this guy, not knowing if overnight, he changed his mind again. I've seen interviews where one of his surrogates is on t.v. defending him, and at the same time, he's out campaigning AGAINST the same thing they thought he was FOR. Unbelievable, are you sure you want this guy in the White House dealing with national security issues? Please.

    September 26, 2012 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
  13. Chris Willett, Buffalo NY

    Romney is the only candidate I've seen who can literally reverse himself in seconds. It's just so strange.

    September 26, 2012 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  14. Jason Wilson

    Just to be clear, mandated healthcare reform at a state level is compassion and mandated healthcare reform at a federal level is government intrusion? This is an example of the idiocy we are facing as a nation. Its a really simple argument. Capitalism in healthcare is the worst idea ever. Capitalism is not designed to achieve the best result its designed to achieve the most profit at the lowest cost. This is a simplifed argument and assumes the highest degree of laissez faire. This is why it is better for Government to run healthcare because then we remove the profit motive as the primary driver in the determination of research and care.

    September 26, 2012 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  15. Mike

    What would Mitt know about compassion, especially towards 47% of Americans?

    September 26, 2012 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  16. Ken

    Man!! I'd LOVE to hear Romney debate himself!!!! He is on both sides of EVERY issue! What an event that would be!

    Anyone else getting the feeling that that NittMitt is a stooge that was paid for by the Democrats as a "gift" to the Republicans???

    September 26, 2012 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  17. Yonni

    This is the last sign of desperation and the first sign of Mitten has exhausted his idea resources. For sure It will be interesting here onward.

    September 26, 2012 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  18. Marie MD

    So the twit good the President bad for trying to do the same but for very one in the US? Aren't these the 47% of the same leeches and unwashed masses he spoke against in May?
    Sorry twit, you can't take it back. We know you don't care if you are not swimming in money!

    September 26, 2012 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  19. Allen Morehouse

    Living here in Massachusetts and seeing first hand what Mitt Romney did to our state. There is no way you want him to run the country!

    His nickname was not only "the flip flooper" but "the never here governor"

    September 26, 2012 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  20. Alan Fisher

    It just may be possible that it is not a problem of messaging – but rather a problem of Mitt's basic readiness for prime time. He seems always poorly prepared, even uninformed – and not only on foreign affairs, where his knowledge base seems to be incredibly inadequate for someone with "fingers on the button"; but also in his knowledge of what goes on in most of America, outside of the megamansions where he lives and where those he hangs out with live.

    Newt seems to think it is a problem of poor marketing – rather it seems more and more likely it is that even the best marketing will not succeed with a defective product.

    September 26, 2012 09:21 pm at 9:21 pm |
  21. Namejkane sfl a vote for the gop will cut your moms medicare and soc sec .can you afford to pay for them???

    If healthcare is good enough for Massachusetts romney the tax cheat ,why is it not good enough for the other 49 states ????
    They have children too .

    September 26, 2012 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  22. RPOL78

    This is just unbelievable. Mitt finally wants to be who he really is.

    Makes you think he felt he was was entitiled to be President.

    September 26, 2012 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  23. mb

    Sounds like Mitt likes his law, but can't stand the fact theres another name for it. He would support obamacare if it were called romneycare. He's flip flopped so Manu times how do you know where this clown stands on anything? I know, it all depends on who has their checkbook open to his campaign at the time he's asked how he would handle an issue.

    September 26, 2012 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
  24. Nameirish60

    Poor Mittens! Trapped in a world of his own design. Flipping and flopping every day must be so tiring! I don't mind a person changing his/her mind, most objective people do from time to time and that can be a sign of intellectual growth. But Mittens, are you seriously wanting us to believe that a plan good for millions in Mass. is so flawed that even while taking credit for it as a sign of compassion, you attack the President for extending its use nationwide? Your message and your political base share a common denominator: they're both lukewarm.

    September 26, 2012 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
  25. gypsydaveywithablowtorch

    Yeah, but didn't he call Obamacare "immoral"? Is Casper Milquetoast trying to tack to the middle? Does anyone know what he really stands for or believes in? Does he even know?

    September 26, 2012 09:35 pm at 9:35 pm |
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