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Mike Castle learns to love the repeal movement

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee passes on a video with production values that will warm the heart of any "Tanner '88" fan. In it, Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.), who was the first GOP candidate for the U.S. Senate to waver on whether or not he could repeal the Affordable Care Act, promises Republicans that he'd be open to repeal if the party wins back the White House.

"You're not going to be able to repeal this legislation," says Castle. "Now maybe we could if there's an election for a new president and you have a couple of elections for Congress. I'd be willing to consider it."

Democrats love this issue, especially in a race like this -- a blue state with a GOP candidate who's cultivated a reputation as a moderate. To them, it has the potential of alienating moderates and souring tea party activists on Castle. According to Chris Shirey, the state coordinator for the Delaware Tea Party, the rhetoric in this video isn't enough to win over Castle's critics.

"His take on it," said Shirey, "from the way he explained it to us, is that trying to repeal the bill is a waste of effort -- it's a waste of time. Our thought is, how do you know unless you try? What he said in this video ... I think that's what he's trying to put out there, what he's been saying to us, that it's a wasted effort. We feel he should be more firm on that."

Shirey said that tea party activists were annoyed with Castle for not coming around on the issue. "We're not ready to hang him out to dry," she said, "but he has irritated some of us."

By David Weigel  |  April 6, 2010; 3:36 PM ET
Categories:  2010 Election  
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