A flurry of campaign blasts and e-mails today reveals one thing for sure:
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon, who's seeking re-election this year, has struggled mightily over President Obama's health care law.
Nixon himself sparked the latest flurry on Monday when he met with reporters in St. Louis. The governor was described as sounding more like a Republican when asked about the approaching Supreme Court decision.
“I think I’ve been pretty clear…that the health insurance mandate is not something that I think is a good thing," Nixon said. "Without going into great detail, having the government um....um....order you to buy something like that is not something that in the past I’ve supported.”
Nixon, a Democrat, has been careful on the issue, bypassing opportunities to say point-blank that he opposes the law. But he has told reporters in recent months that he doesn't like the individual mandate.
In fact, I heard him say as much a few months ago when Nixon spoke to the Star editorial board. I just found that in my notes.
But his likely November opponent, Dave Spence, today blasted Nixon for saying 'I've been pretty clear" on health care when he's been anything but.
"Jay Nixon now claiming it was `pretty clear' the individual mandate is not something that he thinks is good is outrageous revisionist history at best and more likely a bold-faced lie that's an insult to Missourians," Spence said in a statement.
That statement was backed up with a pair of documents Republicans obtained through a freedom-of-information request that showed Nixon cooperating with administration officials on the issue in 2009 when health care was winding its way through Congress.
The bill passed in March 2010.
Spence said Nixon also failed to join lawsuits against the plan.
We'll post word from the governor's office when we get it.