Romney is asked how he will convince conservatives that are suspect of him because of the individual mandate in RomneyCare, and he responds by saying that states do have the power to issue mandates like kids going to school or car insurance. On the issue of car insurance, he explains that his conservative friends tell him that we don’t have to have automobiles and he counters by saying “what state do you live in? Of course you have to have automobiles in this nation.”
Are you kidding me? That is so weak! Sure, someone may feel like they must have an automobile to go to work or get groceries or what not, but there is nothing that legally compels anyone to buy an automobile. Driving is a privilege and if you choose to participate, then you have to follow state laws. But you don’t have to buy one. You can ride a bike if you want. Or a subway.
His basic argument in the video below is that states have the right to issue mandates on individuals that the federal government does not, and while he is right that some state constitutions may grant that authority, conservatism is about small government, limited government. Not big government that will issue a mandate that says you have to buy health care. But government that will get off your back and let you succeed or fail on your own merits. It’s called liberty and it is the bedrock on which this nation was founded.
Quite honestly, I can’t believe this is the argument he made, especially to sell himself to conservatives. Massive fail.