Ouch. Image c/o Humble Libertarian
By the Left Coast Rebel
The press -- left and right -- are collectively pronouncing liberal-statist Massachusetts ex-governor Mitt Romney the winner of yesterday's Fox News/Google GOP debate.
It's a foregone conclusion in their mind, now, that Mitt will rise to the top, be crowned the king-of-the-GOP, and receive the support of the nation's center-right groups (fiscal conservatives, Tea Partiers, evangelicals, etc.).
Philip Klein (via Memeorandum) splashes freezing-cold water on this illusion. Klein lays out the facts on Romney's smoke-and-mirrors promises on the most important issue of our time -- ObamaCare repeal.
First is philosophy. Romney's all-defining signature political achievement in Massachusetts was RomneyCare, which is just a state-run version of ObamaCare.
But, what about Romney's promised ObamaCare nullification executive order?
Romney's signature achievement was the passage of a health care law that was the forerunner to Obamacare. Both plans: expand Medicaid, force individuals to obtain government-approved insurance coverage or pay a penalty, and provide government subsidies to individuals to purchase government-designed insurance policies on government-run exchanges.
As president, Romney could direct his administration not to implement some regulatory aspects of the law, but a future Democratic president could quickly reinstate them.Hmm. That's certainly not very reassuring.
It gets worse:
Where would we go from there, then, even if hypothetically under a Romney presidency?
Furthermore, he couldn't, through executive order, eliminate most of the major spending provisions in the law. For that to happen, we'd need to see a repeal bill passed through both chambers of Congress. Given the unlikelihood that Republicans would gain a 60-vote supermajority in the Senate, this would have to be done through the reconciliation process.
Though some people have argued to me that a GOP Congress would obviously pass a repeal of Obamacare and Romney would be forced to sign it, there's no reason to believe that Congressional leaders would pursue a sure to be acrimonious reconciliation process unless the president were willing to stake political capital on it. So a President Romney couldn't passively sit back and wait for a repeal bill to appear on his desk, he'd have to show courageous presidential leadership, pounding the table on the issue for months. And it won't be just any months, but he'll have to stake the crucial early months of his presidency on it after taking office in January 2013, because the major provisions start in 2014, and it will be harder to unwind by then.Uh oh. For anyone here that believes Mitt Romney would focus the first few months of his presidency on the sure-to-be contentious issue of repeal... I have a bridge in Ohio to sell you.
Or, perhaps you are misinformed enough to think that House republican leaders are interested in ObamaCare repeal as well? If so, Romney is your guy.
UPDATED: Aside from ObamaCare repeal, Romney's biggest hurdle may be convincing social conservatives that his outliberalling-Ted-Kennedy's record doesn't speak for itself (footage from the Romney/Kennedy Debate, October 1994).
ALSO READ: At American Thinker, "Mitt Romney: A Liberal's Liberal Republican"
UPDATED X2: Tania Patriot on Facebook posted a Freedomworks PDF listing all of Mitt Romney's transgression. It's a real eye-opener.