The GOP was for a health care mandate, before they were against it:
“Conservatives today say that’s unacceptable. Not long ago, many of them saw a national mandate as a free-market route to guarantee coverage for all Americans — the answer to liberal ambitions for a government-run entitlement like Medicare. Most experts agree some kind of requirement is needed in a reformed system because health insurance doesn’t work if people can put off joining the risk pool until they get sick.
In the early 1970s, President Richard Nixon favored a mandate that employers provide insurance. In the 1990s, the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, embraced an individual requirement. Not anymore.
The idea of an individual mandate as an alternative to single-payer was a Republican idea,
said health economist Mark Pauly of the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. In 1991, he published a paper that explained how a mandate could be combined with tax credits — two ideas that are now part of Obama’s law. Pauly’s paper was well-received — by the George H.W. Bush administration.”