Democrats, not Mitt Romney, took the lead Monday in celebrating the fifth anniversary of the Massachusetts healthcare reforms that the former governor signed into law.

Democrats on the national and state level giddily took the opportunity to remind voters, especially conservatives, of the reforms, which they said paved the way for President Obama's 2010 national healthcare reform law.

Brad Woodhouse, the communications director for the Democratic National Committee, tweeted:

Thanks @mittromney, founding father of health care reform, on its 5th bday! B/c of you, nat'l health care reform is a reality! #fitn #TYMitt

Additionally the Democratic parties of Massachusetts and New Hampshire — Romney's home state and the first-in-the-nation primary state, respectively — will hold events to "thank" Romney for the reforms.

Democrats are mindful of the challenges that "RomneyCare," as critics call it, could pose for the former Massachusetts governor in the upcoming Republican presidential primary.

Romney's conservative critics have heaped criticism on his healthcare plan for its similarities to the reform bill Obama passed through Congress, a measure despised by the GOP primary base. A number of Romney's supporters have given him some political cover, though Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) backtracked a bit, saying Romney must admit the reforms were a mistake if he wants to win DeMint's endorsement again in 2012, as he had in 2008.

For his part, Romney has stuck by his reforms, though he has also admitted that he would change his approach in some ways if he had the chance to do it over. The 2008 Republican presidential candidate is also trying to turn it into somewhat of a political asset.

"If [President Obama and I] get the chance to talk about healthcare — which would be fun, because of course he does me the great favor of saying that I was the inspiration for his plan — I'll say, if that was the case, why didn't you call me? Why didn't you ask what was wrong?" Romney said last month in a speech in Nevada.

But Romney's campaign-in-waiting isn't exactly trumpeting the reforms five years after their implementation. A spokeswoman for Romney didn't immediately respond to an email asking whether his political operation would be doing anything to mark the occasion.