The Corner

Politics & Policy

Christie’s Bizarre Obamacare Comment

In the undercard debate last night, Governor Christie defended his health-care record against Governor Jindal thus: “We stopped Obamacare in New Jersey because we refused to participate in the federal exchange.” New Jersey does participate in the federal exchange; it refrained from setting up its own state exchange. That was, I think, the right call, the one most anti-Obamacare folks wanted the state to make and most pro-Obamacare people didn’t want it to make. So maybe Christie just had a slip of the tongue. But then you run into the problem that his comment makes no sense even if you clean it up. Obamacare is going forward in New Jersey the same way it is in most of the country, and nothing Christie has done has stopped it. The comment makes me wonder how much thought Christie has given to Obamacare.

(disclosure)

Update: A reader adds, “Bizarreness compounded: not only did Christie say ‘we stopped Obamacare,’ which wasn’t true no matter how you sliced it, he had already said earlier that one of the uncontrollable variables in New Jersey’s deficits was the the health care costs caused by Obamacare.  But if you stopped it . . .”

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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