Confusing Sistah Soljah
Uh, Mitt. I think you're taking the concept of "Sistah Soljah" a little bit too literally here:
Mitt Romney floated an eyebrow-raising suggestion on Veterans Day: privatize veterans' health care.
Speaking with a dozen vets in an occasionally emotional roundtable discussion in South Carolina Friday, the GOP presidential contender sympathized with the service members' difficulties obtaining treatment from the Department of Veterans Affairs, which one vet described as "adversarial."
Romney, who has already proposed privatizing Medicare, suggested that maybe giving wounded warriors an outside option would force VA health bureaucrats to be a little more responsive.
"When you work in the private sector and you have a competitor, you know if I don't treat this customer right, they're going to leave me and go somewhere else, so I'd better treat them right," Romney said. "Whereas if you're the government, they know there's nowhere else you guys can go. You're stuck.
Sometimes you wonder if there would be some way to introduce some private-sector competition, somebody else that could come in and say, you know, that each soldier gets X thousand dollars attributed to them, and then they can choose whether they want to go in the government system or in a private system with the money that follows them," said Romney. "Like what happens with schools in Florida, where people have a voucher that goes with them. Who knows?"
See Mitt, the "Sistah Soljah" is designed to kick one of your party's constituent groups in the teeth in order to prove you are "independent" and appeal to the middle. Nobody but the most extreme free market zealots want to privatize the VA. Hardcore conservative Veteran groups like the VFW don't even support it.
But kudos for choosing Veterans Day to talk about it. Your position as the most ideologically incoherent candidate in American history is intact.