Earlier this week Mitt Romney's senior adviser said that the health care reform personal mandate penalty was NOT a tax. Romney was understandably concerned about being tarred by his own health care reform program in Massachusetts, which contains the same penalty.
“The governor disagreed with the ruling of the court. He agreed with the dissent that was written by Justice Scalia that very clearly said that the mandate was not a tax,” Eric Fehrnstrom, a senior adviser to Romney, said on MSNBC. “The governor believes what we put in place in Massachusetts was a penalty, and he disagrees with the court’s ruling that the mandate was a tax.”Then, today we find out that Mitt has changed his mind. It seems that indeed Obama's health care reform mandate penalty is now a tax, while Romney's still isn't.
”The majority of the court said it is a tax, and therefore it is a tax,” Romney said in an interview with CBS Wednesday, citing the Supreme Court’s health law ruling last week that the individual mandate fell under the federal government’s authority to levy taxes and was therefore constitutional.Now, while I'm sure Romney would claim that the senior staffer didn't know what he was talking about, there's the matter of Mitt Romney's own campaign Web site (and spokeswoman), which still, at this moment, reports that Mitt thinks the penalty is NOT a tax (h/t Sam Stein).
So it's either an unconstitutional penalty or a constitutional tax? And Romney is now saying that he agrees with the court, that the federal health care reform penalty is a tax. So that means that Romney is endorsing the majority opinion and that Romney thinks ObamaCare is constitutional.
Someone should ask him.