GOP Presidential Hopefuls Make Final Pitches To Florida Primary Voters
Among the campaign issues are the parallels between the federal health overhaul and the Massachusetts law former Gov. Mitt Romney signed and Newt Gingrich's support of the individual mandate.
The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire: Romney Makes Final Pitch To Seniors Before Florida Vote
In his last campaign stop before results of Florida's presidential primary start rolling in Tuesday night, Mitt Romney led a crowd of senior citizens in singing "America the Beautiful." Before breaking into song, Mr. Romney dealt with some substantive matters. "I understand a few of you here are on Medicare," Mr. Romney joked. "That being the case, I hope you tell your friends … we will never go after Medicare or Social Security" (Murray, 1/30).
Los Angeles Times: Romney And Gingrich Stage Final Bitter Blitz In Florida
At an airport rally in Tampa, Gingrich opened a new front against Romney, accusing him of waging a war on religion — a charge he has repeatedly leveled against Obama. "Romney imposed on Catholic hospitals in Massachusetts a position against their conscience," Gingrich said, suggesting that religious organizations, under some circumstances, were forced to provide reproductive care that conflicts with their faith. He also accused Romney of cutting off kosher meals for Jewish seniors as a way to trim Medicaid costs (Reston and Mehta, 1/31).
Boston Globe: As Fla. Heads To Polls, GOP Candidates Keep Sparring
Yesterday, Gingrich introduced a new line of criticism in a series of attacks on Romney: accusing him of trampling "religious liberty" at Catholic hospitals and Jewish nursing homes when he was governor. He did not explain the Catholic hospital reference. In 2005, however, Romney confirmed that all hospitals in the state were required to provide Plan B, the emergency contraception pill, under Medicaid (Levinson and Viser, 1/31).
Politico: 'Romneycare' Meet 'Obamacare'
It's something supporters of President Barack Obama's health reform law will say again and again: The health care overhaul put into place in Massachusetts by Mitt Romney is the big (but smaller) sister of the federal law. His rivals for the Republican presidential nomination like to say it, too. But that doesn't mean Romney's law gets to stay just like it was just because it got there first. It still has to conform to the federal law, and that won't exactly be an easy lift (Nocera, 1/30).
Health News Florida / Tampa Bay Times: Republicans Fret About Romney And His Mass. Health Plan
The candidates have circled the issue for months, throwing bantam punches that mostly missed. During Thursday night's GOP presidential debate, Rick Santorum broke through with an aggressive dismantling of Mitt Romney on health care. … Santorum drew fresh attention to a weakness that has long shadowed Romney. While he rails against "Obamacare," the similarities with the plan Romney implemented as governor of Massachusetts — "Romneycare," as Santorum called it — could deflate a contrast Republicans are eager to draw in the general election with President Obama (Leary, 1/29).
The Hill: Romney Camp Touts Clips Of Gingrich Backing Individual Mandate
Mitt Romney's campaign is touting a newly unearthed clip of Newt Gingrich praising the individual mandate in President Obama's healthcare plan as the former Massachusetts governor looks to solidify his growing lead in the pivotal Florida primary. In the clip from a 2009 teleconference Gingrich held in his capacity representing his healthcare consulting organization, Gingrich speaks in support of an individual mandate (Sink, 1/30).
The Associated Press: Gingrich Sketches Day 1 Agenda For His Presidency
To hear Newt Gingrich tell it, the dramatic conservative change he promises will begin even before he is sworn in as president in 2013. "My goal would be by the end of that first day, about the time that President Obama arrives back in Chicago, that we will have dismantled about 40 percent of his government," he tells audiences. Obama's health care bill? Repealed (Espo, 1/30).
The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire: Gingrich Vows To Overturn 'Anti-Religious' Policies
Newt Gingrich stepped up his attack against President Barack Obama as he campaigned in Florida Monday, accusing the Democratic administration of declaring a "war against Christianity" with a new regulation requiring employers to cover birth control in their health policies (Radnofsky, 1/30).