Everyone knows Mitt Romney was the first person to enact mandated insurance coverage. The success of his program led to Democrats and President Obama doing the exact same thing in 2009-10 when they reformed health care at the federal level. As we all know, the individual mandate is a Republican plan. Always as been. The moment Barack Obama put it in his reform package, it drew the ire of Republicans. It has ever since been the battle cry for a Republican take back of the White House. Heck, it did win them control of the House in 2010.
The mandate was upheld by the Supreme Court. Republicans can cry all day (and they will) about it being illegal but the public largely knows it's not. Also, Mitt Romney is sorely losing this race; and Republicans know it. In order to prove Mitt Romney is not a callous billionaire that doesn't care about non-rich people, their best hope is to resort to Romneycare. It's all they have. If it means pulling 3-5% of independents his way and winning the race, they'll do it.
They will embrace Romneycare and the individual mandate with a straight-face just like the last three years never happened. These are the same people who took the largest surplus in history and turned it into the largest deficit in history and are now complaining the national debt is too high. These are the same people who added $7 trillion to the federal debt in 9 years and still call themselves fiscal conservatives. If you don't think they would tepidly embrace a law they've compared to Soviet Gulags in order to win an election and send Obama packing, you're seriously out of touch with just how crazy this GOP truly is. They wouldn't bat an eye, trust me.