When Chris Wallace asked Mitt Romney on Fox News Sunday why he lost the presidential race, one of the reasons Romney highlighted was, "ObamaCare was very attractive, particularly for those without health insurance, and they came out in large numbers to vote, so that was part of a successful campaign."
He added: "Well, I think the ObamaCare attractiveness and feature was something we underestimated in a — particularly among lower incomes. And we just didn't do as — as good a job at connecting with that audience as we should have."
It's an extraordinary admission because Republicans spent years trying to scare voters into believing that the law would wreck the country. It was portrayed as a step towards socialism, or worse, as its "death panel" provisions would soon condemn your grandparents.
Romney himself ran against ObamaCare even as the Obama strategist David Plouffe gave him credit for being the plan's godfather. That's a rather bizarre strategy for someone who now claims the reform was the equivalent of political gold.
What Romney meant, of course, was that ObamaCare was a political bribe. He implied that to donors in a conference call a week after the election, arguing that the president gave big policy "gifts" to loyal Democratic constituencies to secure their votes.
But there's little doubt the politics of ObamaCare have changed since the Supreme Court upheld the law's constitutionality. Conservative governors are now even signing on to provisions of the law they once derisively dismissed.
ObamaCare may not be the perfect solution to the country's health care problems. But it's no longer radioactive politics either.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like
- The Daily Show has some fun mocking the CPAC power players
- Here's proof that Justin Bieber is just as spoiled as you always thought
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Watch Zach Galifianakis get annoyed at President Obama on Between Two Ferns
- Why I'm sick and tired of seeing naked women on HBO
- 10 things you need to know today: March 11, 2014
- Why is it so expensive to build a bridge in America?
- Why Ted Cruz is the real-life Frank Underwood
- What the collapse of the Ming Dynasty can tell us about American decline
Subscribe to the Week