The cratering of the president’s popularity makes sense after months of a public relations disaster– and that’s what Healthcare.gov’s crappy rollout was. If it were an actual disaster, people would have died.
Now that the federal site working for nearly everyone, it seems Republicans want to talk about anything else — handshakes, selfies and one doctor in Kentucky who is retiring rather then digitizing his records.
The battle over Obamacare has always been a battle of stories — good and bad.
The good stories will have people crying tears of joy. The bad stories will have people complaining about things that have been happening for years — networks narrowing, deductibles rising and doctors wanting higher reimbursements.
It’s easy for negatives to drown out what’s real about the law. It’s true that the deductibles for ACA plans are too high for the chronically ill. But they’re also capped. The real story is being insured is infinitely better than being one of the over 10 million Americans with a chronic illness who have no insurance at all.
The real story is enrollments are skyrocketing.
The real story is millions of Americans being insured for the first time. Middle class workers paying less. Insurance companies actually being accountable for costs for the first time.
The real story is Republicans are denying millions Medicaid, driving up costs in their states and putting lives at risk to make a argument for complete repeal that’s only supported by about a third of Americans.
THE REAL STORY IS THAT OBAMACARE SEEMS TO BE SOLVING OUR LONG-TERM DEBT PROBLEM, WHICH MEANS WE CAN REJECT THE SPECIOUS ARGUMENT THAT WE NEED TO GUT OUR SAFETY NET.
The right thinks the advantage they had when the world was laughing at Healthcare.gov will persist forever. They’re sure that between Fox News, AM radio and social media, they can flood the media with trumped-up freakouts. That worked with the Stimulus and it’s worked with the ACA so far.
But in 2014, when 85% of America sees their insurance is intact and millions of Americans are newly covered, Republicans will have to explain why they still want to take health insurance away from millions.
[CC image via LaDawna Howard |Flickr.com]