Posted at 10:54 AM ET, 10/11/2011

Rick Perry’s Republican Debate Playbook: Health Care

Rick Perry’s stack of study material likely just got a little thicker Tuesday morning as an NBC News investigation revealed just how much the White House relied on Mitt Romney’sMassachusetts health-care plan in crafting the federal law.
Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, center, greets members of the audience on Oct. 10, 2011. (AP Photo/Steven Senne) Texas Gov. Rick Perry, GOP presidential contender, speaks at McCarthy & Bailey's Irish Pub in Sioux City, Iowa on Oct. 8, 2011. (AP Photo/The Sioux City Journal, Jim Lee)

The NBC report says:

Newly obtained White House records provide fresh details on how senior Obama administration officials used Mitt Romney’s landmark health-care law in Massachusetts as a model for the new federal law, including recruiting some of Romney’s own health care advisers and experts to help craft the act now derided by Republicans as “Obamacare.”

The records, gleaned from White House visitor logs reviewed by NBC News, show that senior White House officials had a dozen meetings in 2009 with three health-care advisers and experts who helped shape the health care reform law signed by Romney in 2006, when the Republican presidential candidate was governor of Massachusetts. One of those meetings, on July 20, 2009, was in the Oval Office and presided over by President Barack Obama, the records show.

Romney’s comeback to the Obamaneycare attack has always been a variation on this line: “He does me the great favor of saying that I was the inspiration of his plan. If that’s the case, why didn’t you call me?”

On stage tonight, Perry, who signaled a new focus on health care with a sharp attack ad yesterday, could have a ready retort: “Obama didn’t have to call you, Mitt. He had your advisers on speed dial.”

By  |  10:54 AM ET, 10/11/2011

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