The First Rule of Signing Health Insurance Reform in Massachusetts is That You Don’t Talk About Signing Health Insurance Reform in Massachusetts

Erick Erickson is basically responsible for the rise of Nikki Haley and Ted Cruz, so when he gets offended, people listen. He hears Romney spox Andrea Saul go on Fox News and make the point that “if people had been in Massachusetts, under Governor Romney’s health care plan, they would have had health care.” He hulks out.

Conservatives have put aside their distrust of Romney on this issue in the name of beating Barack Obama. They thought he and his campaign team had gotten the message and the hints. Consider the scab picked, the wound opened, and the distrust trickling out again.

Is that all it takes? We’ve been over this. Mitt Romney isn’t able to talk down the Affordable Care Act like Generic Republican X (or Rick Santorum) would have been able to, because he implemented mandate-based health insurance reform in Massachusetts and he stands by it. Conservatives bet that health care reform was so obviously unconstitutional that it would be unspooled by the Supreme Court. That didn’t happen. So they’ve got to face a general election with a candidate who merely understands health insurance reform better than most politicians, agrees with conservatives that states (not the feds) should implement it, and is not making it the centerpiece of a campaign that’s unfolding in a period of 8 percent unemployment.

How dare he.