By Brad Friedman on 3/26/2012, 3:08pm PT  

I don't necessarily care for the Affordable Care Act (ACA or "ObamaCare"), any more than any other non-disinformed, non-wingnut. Neither am I enough of a Constitutional expert to argue for or against its Constitutionality, which is currently being argued in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.

But over the last several days, on Twitter, I've been asking to hear from folks who have been negatively affected by "ObamaCare" personally, in any way whatsoever. Given the fits and tortured distortions and twisted outrages that Republicans have been pretending to throw over the law, and its individual mandate requiring those who do not already have health insurance to buy some, I'm sure there must be many personal horror stories to relate, right?

I've got a lot of wingnuts and Breitbots who follow me on the Twitters, and they are usually all too happy to take whatever shots they can at me or Obama or anything else they can imagineer, even if they have to make shit up to do it. But, in this case, not a one of 'em was able to point to a single instance of being negatively affected personally by "ObamaCare" in any way. Go figure.

There is, of course, a reason for that...

The Affordable Care Act doesn't actually affect anyone negatively, other than those politicians who may have to run some day against the party that went to the mat to pass a bill that actually will help a lot of Americans --- even if it was a bill that Republicans themselves had initially proposed, but failed to pass when they had the chance.

While a far better system of health care could have been --- arguably should have been --- at least fought for by the Democrats, what I hate even more than "ObamaCare" are the out and out lies about it from political opponents who are willing to put lives at risk in order to try and score political points by attacking it.

No, it is not "a government takeover of the health care system," no matter how many times folks like Rick Santorum, Rush Limbaugh and all the other Republican Party hacks, flacks and liars disingenuously repeat the lie over and over again.

So, as Republicans have taken their phony, 100% pretend "outrage" about "ObamaCare" all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court this week, it's important to once again remind you that the "individual mandate" in the ACA, was a Republican plan to begin with. Where Democrats, long ago, might have preferred something closer to a single payer system (as still-advocated by morally-correct progressives), it was Republicans who initially touted the need for "individual mandates" as a conservative, non-governmental, market-based solution to the problem of sky-rocketing health care costs.

Yes, Republicans were for the "individual mandate" before they were against it. Specifically, many of the very same Republicans who now pretend to be the most offended by the alleged "unconstitutionality" of "ObamaCare" were also among the loudest voices in favor of the individual government mandate to purchase private health insurance in the past as a matter of personal responsibility.

Some of those Republican individual mandate proponents who loved it then --- but hypocritically hate it, now that Democrats support it --- include folks like Tea Party King Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina, Outrage Meister and Pretend Presidential Candidate Newt Gingrich and Sen. Chuck "Government Will Pull the Plug on Grandma" Grassley of Iowa.

ThinkProgress health care reform analyst Igor Volsky compiled just a few video clips from some of the "51-member coalition representing Republicans who supported a federal health care mandate before President Barack Obama endorsed it." He describes them in a satirical "PRESS ADVISORY" today as "Republicans for Mandating Coverage". Here's his realclips of Republicans advocating, back in the day, for the same individual mandate they now oppose...

But that was then, of course. Phony outrage and pretend concern about "the Constitution" is now. Sadly, their brain-dead followers believe the phony outrage, even if they can't tell you exactly why. Though both the comments section below, and my Twitter account, are still available to those who would like to share how they have been, or will be, negatively affected personally by "ObamaCare."

We'll be waiting --- just as we're still waiting to hear from those who have been negatively affected by marriage equality. This may take a while.

See Volsky's ThinkProgress piece for the complete 51-member Republican "coalition" of those who --- at least used to --- support a federal government individual health care mandate, before they didn't.

CORRECTION: We had originally identified Sen. Chuck Grassley as representing Nebraska, rather than Iowa. That's been corrected in the above. We apologize to the good people of Nebraska for the error.

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