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The Boston Globe


In awkward agreement, Mitt Romney backs President Obama’s contention on mandate

Mitt Romney and President Obama, typically at distant poles on the national health care law and on taxes, found themselves in awkward agreement Monday, sharing the position that “penalty” — not the politically riskier “tax” — is the proper word to describe money owed to the government by people who flout the law’s mandate for health insurance.

Romney’s spokesman, Eric Fehrnstrom, begrudgingly conceded his candidate’s belief that Obama and his team — and not Republicans — are on the right side of a dizzying debate over how to characterize what the Affordable Care Act officially calls a “shared responsibility payment.”

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