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Bill McCollum Takes Aim at Mitt Romney

Former Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum came out swinging on Thursday at former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts, the leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination. McCollum is supporting his former congressional colleague Newt Gingrich in the race and is one of his chairmen in Florida.

In an email sent out to supporters Thursday morning, McCollum insisted Romney is burdened by his continued defense of Romneycare.

McCollum focused on the constitutional challenge he launched against the federal health-care law signed by President Barack Obama.

As the attorney general who filed the lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare now before the Supreme Court, I care deeply not only about this case, but also about repealing and replacing Obamacare, insisted McCollum. For this to happen, President Obama has to be replaced. There is no other candidate as well-equipped as Newt Gingrich to take it to Obama in a health-care debate.

In 2006, as governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney proposed and enacted Romneycare, a health-care law after which much of Obamacare was modeled, McCollum continued. It contained an individual mandate requiring every resident of Massachusetts not otherwise insured to buy a health insurance policy or pay a penalty. It embraced a regulatory framework that has suppressed innovation and competition and resulted in higher insurance premiums and a doctor shortage. The average wait time for a routine checkup has grown to 48 days and many internists are not accepting new patients. Costs have soared and many remain uninsured. Quality, affordability, and accessibility of health care have worsened, not improved.

Because he still supports the Massachusetts health care law and its individual mandate, Governor Romney will be unable to effectively confront Obama in debate and on the campaign trail with the full range of horrors Obama has foisted on the American public with Obamacare, McCollum maintained. He wont be able to denounce the individual mandate, or the government regulations that will determine what health care benefits are essential -- not us or our doctors. He wont be able to connect Obamacare to a growing shortage of doctors, or to the stifling of innovation and decline of quality of our health care, or the inevitability of rationing in order to control costs.

McCollum, who ran twice for the U.S. Senate and for the Republican gubernatorial nomination, said Gingrich would be able to effectively debate -- and defeat -- Obama in the general election.

Newt has the knowledge, leadership skills, and vision necessary to restore our economy and protect us from our enemies. Our country needs a bold, decisive, inspirational leader dedicated to reducing the size and scope of the federal government, enacting major pro-growth tax and regulatory reform, replacing Obamacare, and strengthening our military and national security. Newt embodies all these things, McCollum wrote. Newt is not without his faults none of the candidates are but his positives far outweigh his negatives. Over the last several weeks his critics have greatly distorted and exaggerated his negatives.

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