With less than 20 weeks between now and Election Day, one veteran Democrat turned scientific on Sunday in describing Mitt Romney's views on health care.
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) appeared on CBS' "Face The Nation," hitting Romney on his Obamacare rhetoric.
"Mitt Romney is the Obamacare daddy," Durbin said. "He gave birth to this baby up in Massachusetts and now he doesn't recognize it. He can't pick out any strains in the hereditary chain there that look like anything that he did in Massachusetts."
After the Supreme Court's June 28 ruling that the individual mandate was constitutional, Romney vowed that he would repeal Obamacare, calling the law "bad policy yesterday" and "bad policy today."
By July 4, Romney had contradicted his own campaign in describing the individual mandate's role as a "tax" instead of a "penalty."
"They have spoken," Romney told CBS News on Wednesday, referencing the Supreme Court. "And there's no way around that. You can try and say you wish they decided a different way, but they didn't. They concluded it was a tax. That's what it is."
Those remarks veered away from adviser Eric Fehrnstrom's July 2 MSNBC interview. When asked the same question by host Chuck Todd, Fehrnstrom noted that Romney has "consistently described the mandate as a penalty."
"The governor disagreed with the ruling of the court," he said. "He agreed with the dissent written by Justice Scalia which very clearly stated that the mandate was not a tax."
On Independence Day, the Romney campaign released the fuller CBS News interview transcript, where the GOP presidential hopeful was asked: "If the mandate is a tax under Obamacare, isn't it also a tax under Masscare?"
There, Romney clarifies that at the state level, mandates can be put into action without being classified as taxes.
"And as a result, Massachusetts’ mandate was a mandate, was a penalty, was described that way by the legislature and by me, and so it stays as it was," he said.