Given Romney’s fraught history with the organization — Mother Jones reported yesterday on his antagonistic relationship with the Boston NAACP while governor — invoking the “welfare queen” stereotype against NAACP members who support Obamacare is tone deaf, if not a deliberate attempt to stoke conservative resentment against so-called government freeloaders.
A few months ago, for example, the GOP presidential hopeful responded to questions about contraception access by saying, “If you’re looking for free stuff you don’t have to pay for, vote for the other guy.” Soon after, Romney complained that Obama is trying to buy students’ political support by offering them “free stuff.”
There is a pattern to this. If you’re a woman who wants access to preventive care you might not otherwise be able to afford, Romney sees you as wanting “free stuff.” If you’re a young student who can’t afford higher-ed tuition, Romney assumes you expect “free stuff.”
And if you’re an African American supporter of the NAACP who wants your family to have access to affordable health care, Romney suspects you’re just looking for “free stuff.”
Of course, no one will receive free health insurance under Obamacare; the law makes health care more affordable for working and middle class families through tax credits. But everyone pays into the system to ensure that the government does not have to pick up the tab of the uninsured.