US Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney gives his reaction to the Supreme Court’s upholding key parts of President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare overhaul law on a rooftop overlooking the US Capitol in Washington June 28, 2012. Romney said on Thursday that the American people must defeat President Barack Obama in order to overturn his landmark healthcare overhaul. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
This may be the rare instance where what is good for the country is good for Mitt Romney. While good economic news tends to benefit President Obama and hurt Romney, good legal news could help them both. Mind you, if you actually believe what you say, then if you have been saying the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional, you should be disappointed by its being upheld. But everyone knows that Romney doesn’t believe anything, and many Republicans don’t really believe the individual mandate is unconstitutional. From a purely political perspective, Romney and his party have a rallying cry for their base. They will argue that only electing a Republican president and Congress can undo the ACA, since the Supreme Court won’t.
“What the Court did not do on its last day in session I will do on my first day if elected president,” Romney pledged in a press conference in front of the Capitol. He asserted that Obamacare is “not good law and it’s not good policy.”
“The American people have a choice,” said Romney. “If we’re going to get rid of Obamacare, we’re going to have to replace President Obama.”
At least top Republicans seemed to mostly realize their case was no slam dunk and that they should focus on their policy objection rather than complaining that the Court ruled incorrectly. “The president’s health care law is hurting our economy by driving up health costs and making it harder for small businesses to hire,” said House Speaker John Boehner in a statement. “Today’s ruling underscores the urgency of repealing this harmful law in its entirety.”
Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said:
Today’s decision makes one thing clear: Congress must act to repeal this misguided law. Obamacare has not only limited choices and increased health care costs for American families, it has made it harder for American businesses to hire. Today’s decision does nothing to diminish the fact that Obamacare’s mandates, tax hikes, and Medicare cuts should be repealed and replaced with common sense reforms that lower costs and that the American people actually want. It is my hope that with new leadership in the White House and Senate, we can enact these step-by-step solutions and prevent further damage from this terrible law.
RNC spokesman Sean Spicer told MSNBC, “In November the voters will have a chance to decide. Today we set up a stark contrast for this election. Mitt Romney has made it very clear that on Day One he will repeal Obamacare.”
Erik Erickson, who runs the influential Red State blog but is more of a partisan Republican actor than a member of the media, sounded similar notes: