You can use it as a talking point when the wingnuts argue.
According to the AP, it was the GOP that wanted mandatory health care insurance for all Americans before a black man was elected president. When a Democrat agrees to it, then it's "government overreach" but when a republican suggests it, it's fine with them.
In summary, the republicans turned against it only because the Democrats agreed to it. Obama wasn't really for mandated health care insurance originally. He wanted all children to have health insurance but not necessarily all adults. It was the GOP's idea (as well as Hillary's) according to this story. Mitt Romney says he's against it yet instituted the same thing in Massachusetts when he was governor. A dozen GOP attorneys want to sue to make this illegal.
Unbelievable.... get this...
WASHINGTON – Republicans were for President Barack Obama's requirement that Americans get health insurance before they were against it.
The obligation in the new health care law is a Republican idea that's been around at least two decades. It was once trumpeted as an alternative to Bill and Hillary Clinton's failed health care overhaul in the 1990s. These days, Republicans call it government overreach.
Mitt Romney, weighing another run for the GOP presidential nomination, signed such a requirement into law at the state level as Massachusetts governor in 2006. At the time, Romney defended it as "a personal responsibility principle" and Massachusetts' newest GOP senator, Scott Brown, backed it. Romney now says Obama's plan is a federal takeover that bears little resemblance to what he did as governor and should be repealed.
Republicans say Obama and the Democrats co-opted their original concept, minus a mechanism they proposed for controlling costs. More than a dozen GOP attorneys general are determined to challenge the requirement in federal court as unconstitutional.
"The idea of an individual mandate as an alternative to single-payer was a Republican idea," said health economist Mark Pauly of the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School. In 1991, he published a paper that explained how a mandate could be combined with tax credits — two ideas that are now part of Obama's law. Pauly's paper was well-received — by the George H.W. Bush administration.
"It could have been the basis for a bipartisan compromise, but it wasn't," said Pauly. "Because the Democrats were in favor, the Republicans more or less had to be against it."
Obama rejected a key part of Pauly's proposal: doing away with the tax-free status of employer-sponsored health care and replacing it with a standard tax credit for all Americans. Labor strongly opposes that approach because union members usually have better-than-average coverage and suddenly would have to pay taxes on it. But many economists believe it's a rational solution to America's health care dilemma since it would raise enough money to cover the uninsured and nudge people with coverage into cost-conscious plans.
Romney's success in Massachusetts with a bipartisan health plan that featured a mandate put the idea on the table for the 2008 presidential candidates.
Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton, who failed in the 1990s to require employers to offer coverage, embraced the individual requirement, an idea advocated by her Republican opponents in the earlier health care debate.
"Hillary Clinton believed strongly in universal coverage," said Neera Tanden, her top health care adviser in the 2008 Democratic campaign. "I said to her, 'You are not going to be able to say it's universal coverage unless you have a mandate.' She said, 'I don't want to run unless it's universal coverage.'"
Obama was not prepared to go that far. His health care proposal in the campaign required coverage for children, not adults. Clinton hammered him because his plan didn't guarantee coverage for all. He shot back that health insurance is too expensive to force people to buy it.
Obama remained cool to an individual requirement even once in office. But Tanden, who went on to serve in the Obama administration, said the first sign of a shift came in a letter to congressional leaders last summer in which Obama said he'd be open to the idea if it included a hardship waiver. Obama openly endorsed a mandate in his speech to a joint session of Congress in September.
Aha! The Republicans are caught once again to be lying sacks of you know what. Their sole purpose is to oppose anything that a Democrat would propose even if it would normally appeal to conservatives.
On the other hand, I am not thrilled with the idea of mandated health insurance coverage because I think it may impose hardships on some or many families. I knew that this mandate clause had the stink of the GOP on it. The only good thing to come out of it is that insurance companies hate it because they don't think the penalties for not buying it are high enough.
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