In a scathing editorial today, the Wall Street Journal declares that this week will be seen as "a turning point" if Mitt Romney is not elected president in the fall. Why? Because on Monday, a close adviser said that Romney, at odds with the GOP, does not consider ObamaCare's individual mandate penalty a tax. He thus "absolve[d] President Obama of raising taxes on the middle class," the WSJ declares, turning "the only possible silver lining" of the Supreme Court decision "into a second political defeat." Yes, Romney referred to the penalty as a tax yesterday, but with zero elaboration on his change, "the campaign looks confused in addition to being politically dumb."
The rest of the GOP has been using the decision to accuse Obama—correctly, the WSJ notes—of raising taxes on the middle class, since most of those who are fined will make less than $120,000 per year. "The Romney high command has muddied the tax issue in a way that will help Mr. Obama's claims that he is merely taxing rich folks like Mr. Romney," and that means ObamaCare may not work to incite Republicans the way it did in the 2010 elections. For the guy who promised his party he was the best able to take down Obama, "Mr. Romney is letting them down," concludes the WSJ. Click to read the full editorial.