Durbin: Romney is ‘ObamaCare daddy’

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said Sunday that the presumptive GOP nominee for president, Mitt Romney, was the “daddy” of the Democrats’ 2010 healthcare reform law.

“Let’s get down to the bottom line here: Mitt Romney is the ObamaCare daddy,” Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, said on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”

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“He gave birth to this baby up in Massachusetts, and now he doesn’t recognize it, and can’t pick out any strains in the hereditary chain there that look like anything he did in Massachusetts.”

President Obama and other top Democrats have long said that the healthcare reform bill that Romney helped implement while Massachusetts governor was a model for their own national overhaul.

Romney has said that he wants to repeal the 2010 law, calling it bad policy and saying what works in individual states doesn’t necessarily get the job done at the national level.

But the former governor's campaign was also hurt by its uneven response to the Supreme Court’s ruling that the individual mandate at the heart of the federal healthcare law was a tax.

With the Massachusetts law also featuring a mandate, a top Romney aide, Eric Fehrnstrom, initially said that Romney agreed with Democrats who called the mandate a penalty.

But Romney later said that he agreed with the Supreme Court decision calling it a tax.

Some of Romney’s rivals for the GOP nomination, including former Sen. Rick Santorum (Pa.), charged that Romney would have a hard time contrasting himself with Obama on healthcare because of the Massachusetts law.