The truth is, I would suspect, that Americans would relish either a tax or a penalty to the same degree:)
The good news here is that the conversation has shifted from FREE BIRTH CONTROL to taxes and penalties.
By the way, the news from Slate by way of is that this new debate "hurts both Obama and Romney."
What-ever. I'm sure we can expect much more such "hurt" - on both sides - for approximately the next 126 Days.