Florida's Connie Mack says Dems and Republicans DO need to come together - to repeal health care, that is

Barnicle: If you repeal the health care law, that means that my son, who's 25, would go back off of my insurance.  It would mean pre-existing conditions, that goes out.  You wanna do that, really? To me? To us?

Mack: What I want to do is repeal health care.  This bill that is going to kill jobs, I want to repeal health care.  We can then go back and look at some common sense solutions moving forward.  But you can't ..no, no one.  The voters spoke.  And when I go around my district in town-hall meetings, they don't want this ObamaCare.  And I think most people realize that when you have Democrats who are already stepping up and saying,'well, there are parts of the law that might have gone too far that we need to repeal, I mean I think in general I think the entire piece of legislation is  unconstitutional forcing people to buy something that they don't necessarily want to buy-

Barnicle: You think the people of Lee County, Florida, from Fort Myers down to Naples, they don't want pre-existing conditions in the health care? They don't want their children under 26 to go under their health insurance? They don't want that?

Mack: They don't want ObamaCare, they want common sense solutions, and they certainly don't want the feds (unintelligible).

Van Hollen followed up by saying Democrats do want some provisions to be changed, but "this idea that you're going to throw out the whole thing, including these protections....just doesn't make sense and that is not what the American people are looking for."  Van Hollen said if the GOP had a better idea, they should put that on table initially, "rather than repealing the health care reform."

The health care repeal conversation begins today in Congress.  You can read more about that here.

Fort Myers area Republican Congressman Connie Mack IV, an all but declared candidate for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in 2012, appeared on MSNBC's Morning Joe program this morning in New York to discuss various issues in the news.

When he was asked by hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski if he would sit next to Maryland Democrat Chris Van Hollen (who was also appearing on the segment by remote from Washington) during next week's State of the Union address?

Mack said he'd probably sit next to his wife (Southern California Republican Congresswoman Mary Bono) but that it was a fine idea nonetheless.  He added that the American people ultimately wanted to see action.  "They want to see us working on things like, frankly, repealing health care...."

However, though major polls do show a majority of the public supporting repeal, two recent surveys show that doing so is hardly the first thing on people's minds.

An Associated Press GfK survey found a 41%-40% split on whether to support the bill - but on repeal itself, the poll found that 62% want to leave the law as is or expand it, while 36% want to repeal or reduce its scope.  And a Marist/McClatchy survey, said 49 percent of those it surveyed wanted to let the law stand or expand it while 42 percent wanted to repeal it or scale it back, with 9 percent undecided.  That poll also said that 48% of independents support the law, and 45% of such independents wanted it repealed.

But with Republicans poised to begin debate today and vote tomorrow on repeal (in a purely symbolic gesture), it's too late to interrupt the narrative that apparently everyone hates the legislation.

Mack was confronted by former Boston Globe columnist and now Morning Joe regular Mike Barnicle about his call for repeal:

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