Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace pressed West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin (D-WV) — who is running to fill Robert Byrd’s seat in the Senate — on his past support for the health care law yesterday, asking the governor if he regretted saying that he would have voted for the law just six months ago.
Manchin told Wallace that that he didn’t know what was in the bill when he told the National Governors Association on March 17, “I’d be for it. I think you’ve got to move the ball”:
WALLACE: You’re saying now that if you had known what was really in the bill, although last March you said you would have voted for it, you are now saying you would have voted against it?
MANCHIN: Correct. Knowing the existence as far as how reaching it had been, as far as, I would have. And I think many people didn’t know about the bill. It ends up 2,000 pages or more. Bottom line, the concept was great as far as pre-existing conditions, how do we make sure more people have affordable insurance, how do we take care of children … keeping children on insurance longer because of the market conditions. There are a lot of good parts to it. Why won’t we fix what is wrong with it and make it better.
Manchin, who has held many different positions on the health care law, had previously told Fox News that he would vote to repeal the entire law if it couldn’t be fixed. While some of the governor’s gripes about the 1099 provision have bipartisan support, his new found opposition to the abortion language and “the mandates” is deliberately nonspecific and haphazard.