Opinion Brief

Mitt Romney's big Obamacare problem

How could the Republican attack Obama's health-care bill in a 2012 presidential race when it so resembles Romneycare?

In a civilized jab at a potential presidential rival, President Obama told NBC on Wednesday that his health-care reform package is much like the one Republican Mitt Romney passed as governor of Massachusetts. "When you actually look at the bill itself," Obama said, "it incorporates all sorts of Republican ideas." Given GOP plans to attack health reform in the 2012 presidential election, will the similarities torpedo Romney's chances of winning the nomination? (Watch Tim Pawlenty criticize Mitt Romney's health care position)

Romney's 2012 campaign is toast: Though Romney's still the GOP's 2012 frontrunner, he's doomed if Obama keeps citing Romney's reforms as "a model" for the Affordable Care Act, says Adam Serwer in The American Prospect. With this "inconvenient truth," Obama is undercutting his most likely opponent, who's already know as a flip-flopper.
"Obama undercutting Romney"

Obama knows he's poison to GOP moderates: The president is trying to "take out a potentially dangerous Republican nominee early in the game," says Allahpundit in Hot Air. After seeing how GOP rivals "beat up" Florida Governor Charlie Crist for hugging Obama back in 2009, the president realizes that he doesn't have to attack Romney; he can get Republicans to do it for him."Obama: You know, my plan's a lot like Romneycare, isn't it?"

This may not hurt Romney fatally: If "Obamacare remains unpopular," but economic recovery turns Massachussetts' Romneycare into an "undeniable success," says Marc Ambinder in The Atlantic.  Romney can say his plan worked because it catered to his state's needs. Plus: There's plenty of time for other debates to eclipse health care before 2012. If it's not the "Big Issue," it's not "Romney's problem.""5 reasons why Romney's political career isn't dead"

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PREVIOUS OPINION BRIEFS ON THIS TOPIC:Obamacare backlash: Who'll pay in November?Is Obama now a "great" president?

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