POLITICS
03/28/2008 02:45 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Clinton Hits Obama For Wavering On Single-Payer Health Care

Pivoting off of one of the few policy spats in Monday night's presidential debate in South Carolina, Hillary Clinton hit Barack Obama on Tuesday for wavering on his support for a single-payer health care system. In a video put out on YouTube, the Clinton campaign contrasts portions of the debate - in which Obama says "I never said we should go and try to get single payer" - and a speech Obama gave to the AFL-CIO in 2003 - in which he says, "I happen to be a proponent of single-payer health care coverage."

In Monday's debate, Obama found himself flanked by his two primary opponents as the only candidate whose health care plan did not include a mandate. During the campaign the Illinois Democrat has argued that, if he were starting from scratch he would support a single payer system. In a profile of the Senator in the New Yorker this past spring he offered that, "a single-payer system-a government-managed system like Canada's, which disconnects health insurance from employment-'would probably make sense. But we've got all these legacy systems in place, and managing the transition, as well as adjusting the culture to a different system, would be difficult to pull off. So we may need a system that's not so disruptive that people feel like suddenly what they've known for most of their lives is thrown by the wayside.'"