During a Republican presidential debate on Dec. 10, 2011, in Des Moines, Iowa, Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., took aim at one of her rivals, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, for his past support for an individual mandate for health insurance — the government requirement for individuals to buy health insurance. It’s a central provision at issue in the legal challenges to President Barack Obama’s health care law.

In 1993, Bachmann said, Gingrich “first advocated for the individual mandate in health care. And as recently as May of this year, he was still advocating for the individual mandate in health care.”

Readers asked us to check the claim, so we did.

Gingrich appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press on Oct. 3, 1993, at a time when the Clinton administration was trying to pass a health-care overhaul. On the May 15, 2011, edition of Meet the Press, host David Gregory replayed a clip from Gingrich’s 1993 appearance that addressed the individual mandate.

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