Mitt Romney says Mass. healthcare plan influenced Obamacare

JAN. 16, 2015 FILE PHOTOGregory Bull/AP

Mitt Romney said in a Boston Globe obituary that longtime friend and Staples founder Tom Stemberg pushed for the healthcare system implemented in Massachusetts during his time as governor, and that system led to Obamacare.

WASHINGTON — Mitt Romney is finally taking credit — or admitting blame — for Obamacare.

After years of denying that Obamacare was closely modeled on the universal healthcare insurance plan Romney helped pass as Massachusetts governor, the former presidential candidate took credit for its influence in a Boston Globe obituary for a longtime friend, Staples owner Tom Stemberg.

“Without Tom pushing it, I don’t think we would have had Romneycare,” said Romney. “Without Romneycare, I don’t think we would have Obamacare. So, without Tom a lot of people wouldn’t have health insurance.”

KING: PRESIDENT OBAMA EXPLAINS WHY BLACK LIVES MATTER

Romney has spent years arguing Obamacare wasn’t that similar to his plan, which he long claimed was never designed to be implemented at the national level.

Romney battled with President Obama during the 2012 election, claiming that the universal healthcare system Obama championed was not based off the model he established in Massachusetts.GARY CAMERON/REUTERS

Romney battled with President Obama during the 2012 election, claiming that the universal healthcare system Obama championed was not based off the model he established in Massachusetts.

Romney still believes that Obamacare is a failure, however, and says he would repeal it in favor of stae-crafted plans.MIKE SEGAR/REUTERS

Romney still believes that Obamacare is a failure, however, and says he would repeal it in favor of stae-crafted plans.

Previous Next
  • U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks after the Supreme Court ruled 6-3 to uphold the nationwide availability of tax subsidies that are crucial to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington June 25, 2015. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
  • A man looks over the Affordable Care Act (commonly known as Obamacare) signup page on the HealthCare.gov website in New York in this October 2, 2013 photo illustration. U.S. health officials have investigated whether some of the software code underlying Obamacare's technology infrastructure was produced by people connected to the government of Belarus, but so far have found no evidence of that being the case. REUTERS/Mike Segar/Files (UNITED STATES - Tags: HEALTH SOCIETY POLITICS)

Enlarge

The similarity of the plans was an albatross around Romney’s neck during the 2012 presidential race, as it hurt him with the conservative base and made it hard for him to criticize Obama on healthcare.

Romney sought later on Friday to clarify his comments, arguing that Obamacare “has failed” and saying he’d still repeal it.

“Getting people health insurance is a good thing, and that’s what Tom Stemberg fought for,” he wrote. “I oppose Obamacare and believe it has failed. It drove up premiums, took insurance away from people who were promised otherwise, and usurped state programs. As I said in the campaign, I’d repeal it and replace it with state-crafted plans.”

Tags:
barack obama ,
mitt romney ,
obamacare

Daily News – Politics