Josh Marshall at TalkingPointsMemo, a little more temperate than I am (!), on the debate:
This is the whole deal. Romney lied through his teeth about his tax policy, which would give huge cuts to high income earners and big increases for most middle class families. He just said it wasn’t so. But it is so. It’s just math. Big tax increases on almost everybody except the wealthiest folks.
He also straight up lied about pre-existing conditions. His top advisor admitted his plan doesn’t cover those people just a few minutes after the debate.
The political question is: Can the Obama team put that reality and Romney’s lying back in the center of the debate. The next few days will tell us.
Who is this guy pretending to be Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker?
From “Scott Walker’s Big ‘Obamacare’ Reveal,” Brian Beutler, TPM:
“Walker met with reporters today, and basically admitted that if the ACA [Affordable Care Act] disappears, states like his could step up and make sure people with pre-existing conditions aren’t excluded from the insurance market. A pander, yes, but it opens an exquisite Pandora’s box.
“In response to the obvious followup — how could you do that without a mandate? — he sort of waved his hands, but crucially he admitted it’s something individual states could and might implement themselves. This wasn’t Jerry Brown talking, it was Scott Walker. More than just about any GOP governor, he’s the face of the anti-Obama insurgency. And what he’s suggesting is that many states (either out of desire or political necessity) will implement some of the key features of ‘Obamacare’ even if it’s struck down or repealed at the federal level.”
If you ask Americans if they like Obamacare, a majority says no. But if you ask about the components of Obamacare individually, they say yes. They like kids being able to stay on their parents’ insurance till age 26, they like insurers being required to cover those with pre-existing conditions, and they like eliminating the “doughnut hole” for seniors’ prescription drug coverage.
What’s interesting is that the GOP now seems to be coming around to the same point of view. As we await the Supreme Court’s decision on Obamacare, the GOP is backing away from outright repeal. More and more Republican voices are speaking out in favor of the specific provisions I mentioned above. A big split is developing in the party over this, which makes it hard for Mitt. He’ll go anywhere you tell him, since he has no real convictions, but here he’s being torn in half by his own party.
The GOP says they want the Supreme Court to find Obamacare unconstitutional. But then they’d be forced to confront their growing divide, and one faction would lose and be angry in a presidential election year. Be careful what you wish for.