Mitchell Reports | February 21, 2013
>> this is going to be deaf stating for patients, devastating for taxpayers. it's going to be the biggest job killer ever. we're not going to i want mremt obama care in florida. we're not going to implement this medicaid expansion. sfoo the federal government shouldn'ting telling us what we can and can't buy. this is will be the biggest job killer ever.
>> well, apparently governor rick scott in florida didn't think it was such a job killer after all. the outspoken governor whose state launched the lawsuit in the first place against obama care and led to the supreme court decision, is now embracing a crucial part of the law. the expansion of medicaid . politico's alex burns joins me now for today's politico briefing. alex, he now falls in line behind several other republican governors who were previously outspoken against obama care. they are now going along with it. why?
>> andrea, it's hard to overstate what a sharp reversal this is for rick scott , that for him to suddenly get on board with a key component of obama care. it would be like if we started hearing elizabeth warren talk about repeeling dodd frank. for scott it really reflects the seriousness of his own political peril going into the 2014 cycle. unlike other republican governors, like scott walker , chris christie who did unpopular stuff at the beginning of their terms, but then saw their numbers recover, scott has been stuck in the pits and is struggling to get away from the image of himself as a cold very sort of draconian conservative governor.
>> he is now joining a group that includes jan brewer in arizona, brian sandoval and martinez in new mexico, and kasic in ohio. this is a pretty powerful group of republican, you know, stars in their party who are now going along with the president's signature initiative.
>> it is. when you look at the governors who have sort of dug in on rejecting the medicaid expansion, we're talking about states like texas, mississippi, alabama, south carolina . there's also wisconsin. mostly we're talking about states that just are not particularly politically competitive. it is kind of -- democrats have predicted for a couple of years that key provisions of obama care would turn out to be popular once they were implemented, and it looks at this point like some republicans think medicaid expansion is one of them.
>> what is the relative popularity of the health care program?
>> it is sort of steadily improved since the supreme court ruling upholding the law. i think the view certainly on democrats and some republicans is that as long as there was that court challenge looming over the affordable care act , there was just a sense in the public that maybe it's not totally legitimate. now that the court has validated it, i think voters are more willing to give it a chance.
>> thank you very much for the politico briefing. up next,