RUSH: Ladies and gentlemen, I had an amazing See, I Told You So prediction last Friday about Mitt Romney. By the way, just a little side question. Somebody sent me an e-mail last night wanting to know what Mitt Romney’s real name is. Do you know what his real name is, Snerdley? Well, you know it’s not Mitt. It’s a nickname. If you thought it was Mitt, did you think it was short for something like Mitten or Mittendorf? Well, no, it’s not his real name. Willard, I think. I think his real name is Willard. No, like the hotel. Like the hotel in Washington, the Willard Hotel. (interruption) Are you thinking that Michael Jackson song about the rat? Oh, yeah, that rat movie. (interruption) No, no, no. Don’t do that. It’s Willard the hotel. (interruption) You’re gonna make fun of Willard and Obama as a standard, ordinary, everyday name, huh? (interruption) Standard Muslim name. All right.
At any rate, let me go to the audio sound bites. Let’s go back to last Friday. I want you to listen to this. Mitt is the middle name and it’s not short for anything. Willard Mitt Romney. People wanted to know what I thought he was going to do vis-a-vis Romneycare in Massachusetts and his presidential run. Last Friday I made a prediction, I offered some advice. Let’s revisit it. One week ago, this, my friends, is why we say give us your ears for three hours, and you will be ours for life.
RUSH ARCHIVE: I’m not a political advisor. I’m just a Big Voice on the Right, driving the independents back to Obama. But I really think that he’s gonna have to disown it at some point. So far he won’t. And I don’t know — well, I know he says he wants to repeal Obamacare. If I were Romney — he-he-he — what I would do — I’m sure the guy’s cell phone battery died or I’d-a heard from him — if I were Romney and this question came up, I would be tempted to say, “Why are you asking me for logical consistency? I’m running against Obama. Why don’t you go ask him these questions. He’s the guy that’s got some explaining to do. Obama’s the guy. Job creation, how’s that working out? Hope and change, how’s that working out? Saving the housing market, how’s that working out? Energy independence, how’s that working out? Obama’s the guy that’s intellectually inconsistent.” So Romney could say that, and he has said he wants to repeal Obamacare, but the Republicans are gonna take him on first in the primaries if he says that he fully supports repealing Obamacare. One of his Republican opponents could say, “Well, you ought to support repealing your care, too.” So far he has not chosen a path that would distance himself from it nor throw it under the bus. I don’t know what he’s going to do. Right now it’s almost like a — wild guess here, folks — it’s almost like the strategy is that showing a commitment to himself, policies, by not being bullied off of his own piece of legislation.
RUSH: That’s one week ago. Did I call that or did I call it? Right down the middle I said you’re gonna have to disown it at some point because your Republican opponents are gonna take you on. He also said that one of the reasons why he’s not going to change is he doesn’t want to further this reputation he’s got that he is a flip-flopper. So he basically said he wasn’t going to be bullied off of his own piece of legislation. So he’s committed to it now, for whatever reasons. And here is Romney yesterday afternoon in Ann Arbor. He’s at the University of Michigan cardiovascular center and he spoke about health care policies. This is a portion of what he said.
ROMNEY: I respect the views of those who think we took the wrong course and who think we should have taken a different course. I also recognize that a lot of pundits around the nation are saying that I should just stand up and say this whole thing was a mistake, was just a boneheaded idea and I should just admit it, it was a mistake, and walk away from it. And I presume that a lot of folks would conclude that if I did that, that would be good for me politically. But there’s only one problem with that. It wouldn’t be honest. I, in fact, did what I believed was right for the people of my state. And I’m gonna describe for you now what I think would be right for the people of the United States, which is quite a different plan.
RUSH: So he’s a wedded to it. It’s a home run in terms of the prediction. I shudder to think what this means for him. It’s a big roll of the dice. Well, yeah, you could say it is gutsy. You could say gutsy and, you know what, folks, I was almost right about Romney being named after a hotel. Not a rat, Snerdley, as you said. It wasn’t the historic Willard Hotel in Washington. But Romney was named after J. Willard Marriott, the famed hotel magnate. That was his father’s best friend. J. Willard Marriott was George Romney’s best friend.
RUSH: Dennis in Burbank. It’s great to have you, sir, on Open Line Friday. Hello, sir.
CALLER: How are you?
RUSH: I’m fine. Thank you.
CALLER: Great. It’s great to get on your show. I’ve never been able to get on before, but I wanted to talk to you about Mitt Romney.
CALLER: I’m a little surprised at how much criticism he’s getting for what he did in Massachusetts with the health care, especially from people that supported him back two or three years ago when he had already done it. Nobody complained about it then. I think we need to understand that Mitt was a governor of a largely Democratic state — one of the most Democratic states in the country — a small state, and the people wanted health care. The big thing about Mitt is he’s a solution-oriented guy. He’s a leader and he gets things done, and he had a state of people that wanted health care, and he helped put together a package that — I think, in his mind — was the most free market-oriented type of system that he could get passed.
RUSH: Well, I will say this: I do recall when that health care bill was passed that there were some conservative publications who sang its praises and thought, “Well, this is great.” Of course it turned out to not be so good. But as to the point that, “Hey, he was the governor of a liberal state. He gave the people what they wanted,” that does not cut it with me.
RUSH: Mitt Romney and Massachusetts care. The reason why I think he’s vulnerable on it (and why a lot of other people do, too) is it’s a dead ringer for Obamacare and the country wants Obamacare repealed, and Mitt is saying he wants Obamacare repealed. Now, I understand, Romney does not want to admit a mistake because he doesn’t want to fuel the fire that he’s a flip-flopper, and he thinks that there is something to be gained by staying committed to something that he did. But the argument that the people of Massachusetts, in a liberal state, wanted this and therefore Mitt — as the governor of a liberal state — had to give them what they want?
That’s what it comes down to, to me. Now, see, this is again why I would never succeed in politics. Because the first order of business is get reelected, and that means either giving people what they want or creating the illusion that you’re giving people what they want. I wouldn’t have passed, I wouldn’t have conceived this version of health care. I don’t care who wanted it or where I was. That’s just me. I know this is going to be interpreted as criticism of Romney. It’s not. I’m answering a question I got here from somebody on the phone. If the people of a state want something that I know is wrong and not good, I’m not gonna do it.
That’s just me.
If the people of the state want a health care plan that they foolishly believe is gonna end up costing them less and expanding their coverage, when I know it won’t do either, I’m not gonna do it and then hope I could live with the fallout. But, if that’s what Mitt did, why doesn’t he just say that? Why doesn’t he say, “Look, I was a governor of a liberal state. The people of that state were clamoring for health care reform. I believe in the states being laboratories, trying different things and after all these various experiments, we come up with the best way to do it for the country.” That’s what he’s saying that he would do as president.
Open it up, here. States, do what you want to do here and we’ll come up with the best system we can. But (sigh) politically, I don’t know how he defends the substance of Romneycare and rips the substance of Obamacare at the same time, because there’s not that big a difference between them. In fact, Obama is, we are told, happy to point out, “Hey, you know, Romneycare is a mirror image of Obamacare,” which is not good for Obama. It’s bankrupting the state. It’s not delivering on any of its promises. But I do remember, folks, when Romneycare was passed and signed into law, the Wall Street Journal praised it.
There were some other conservative publications –I can’t remember off the top of my head which ones, but — they praised it, they praised Romney. This was the model, this was going to be the blueprint, this is how we do this going forward. But it’s not. I remember there was some praise for one reason. If my memory serves now, the reason for the original praise for Romneycare is because it shifted some costs to the patients. They had to go out and pay for it. Well, turns out they couldn’t. The prices never became reachable, just like we had yesterday: The health care that people get now, they’re only spending 12 cents for every dollar that’s spent.
Well, that means it’s unaffordable, pure and simple. So we’ll see how this shakes out. It’s too soon to tell. I think all the analysts say, “Well, this kills Romney.” I don’t think that’s true yet. There’s too much to happen here, too many other factors. We don’t know if this is going to be the end of Romney’s campaign, speech yesterday. There are a lot of pundits out there telling you that it is, and it’s just way, way too soon for this. The Founders, you want to go constitutional on this, believed the states should be free to experiment with various solutions to problems, and that was part of the reason that they wanted states: So that different things could be tried.
You’d see what worked,; see what didn’t work. This worked, this didn’t work, but it wasn’t a crime against humanity to try it on a state level. Now, if the people of Massachusetts really hated it, they could move, they could leave, they could go to another state. It’s hard for people to move out of the state — some people don’t like having to do that — but you can’t move out of the United States. If you do something nationally, people are stuck. That’s why federalism is important: If the Feds screw something up and you don’t like it, you’re kinda caught. If Massachusetts or Missouri or somebody else does something you don’t like, you can split the scene. You can go somewhere else.
But you can’t leave the country as easily. You can’t escape the United States — and what is this business (just to show you about the conventional wisdom) that being Romney’s worried he couldn’t survive being a flip-flopper? Oh, really? Obama has never flip-flopped? Yeah, except on almost every part of his foreign policy and national security policy. In one way, I would even give Romney some credit. He got the liberals of Massachusetts to hate government-run health care. There are a lot of ways… (laughing) Well, it’s true. There are a lot of ways Romney could go with this, if he wanted to. But, again, I’m not in politics. That probably would be a death knell for a politician, to say, “Hey, vote for me! I finally got the liberals in Massachusetts to hate government-run health care,” and they do! They don’t like it at all.
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