In the last presidential campaign, then Senator Barack Obama declared his candidacy in early February, 2007, a full year and three quarters before the polls opened on Election Day.
This season, the Republicans seem to be timid – dancing around the arena but not throwing their hats in the ring. Only Mitt Romney has been bold enough to ‘test the waters’ with an ‘exploratory committee’.
Pundits opine that Mitt Romney’s leadership in signing into law a universal health care bill for Massachusetts residents will be his albatross. I think quite the contrary. The mandated health care system in Massachusetts has now been in place for nearly five years and while it is probably far from perfect, it has achieved its multiple objectives.
I would argue that Massachusetts has all but proven that the thorny issue of health care should be the responsibility of the State Governments, where it can be managed on a reasonable scale, as opposed to being one more giant bureaucracy of the Federal Government.
If Mitt Romney were willing to have an open debate on the issues of State vs. Federal management of health care, I think he could help his candidacy immensely. He has so much going for him as a Presidential candidate - he has been a successful CEO, both in the private sector, at Bain & Company, and in the public sector, as governor of Massachusetts.
In the last forty years, five of the seven elected U.S. Presidents had prior experience as State Governors. Romney most assuredly does not lack credentials. The question is: Does he lack inspiration?