By David Sherfinski and Stephen Dinan-The Washington Times
In the wake of the Supreme Courtâ€™s ruling last week, Republicans on Capitol Hill spent four days laying out an attack on President Obamaâ€™s health care law as a massive tax increase.
On Monday, Mitt Romneyâ€™s top campaign strategist undercut them.
Eric Fehrnstrom said Mr. Romney agrees with Mr. Obama that the lawâ€™s punishment for flouting the individual mandate and not buying health insurance is a â€œpenalty,â€ not a tax â€” just like the legislation Mr. Romney signed as governor of Massachusetts.
â€œThe governor has consistently described the mandate in Massachusetts as a penalty,â€ Mr. Fehrnstrom said on MSNBC. â€œThe governor disagreed with the ruling of the court; he agreed with the dissent that was written by Justice [Antonin] Scalia, which clearly states the mandate was not a tax.â€
After watching the court reject their legal arguments, congressional Republicans settled for what they hoped would be a powerful political attack, bolstered by the courtâ€™s declaration that the individual mandate amounted to a tax. The courtâ€™s conclusion contradicted Mr. Obama, who during the debate in 2009 and 2010 had repeatedly said it wasnâ€™t a tax.
â€œThe court has now spoken. It is a tax,â€ Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, said in the aftermath of the ruling.
To read more, visit: Â http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/jul/2/romney-goes-against-gop-on-tax-label/
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