Here's the letter they sent:Two top Senate Republicans have sternly warned the leaders of the NFL and other sports leagues against wading into the politically volatile waters of Obamacare.
“Given the divisiveness and persistent unpopularity of the health care [law], it is difficult to understand why an organization like yours would risk damaging its inclusive and apolitical brand by lending its name to its promotion,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republican Whip John Cornyn wrote in letters to the commissioners of the NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, PGA and the chairman and chief executive officer of NASCAR.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius had told reporters earlier this week that she is in conversations with some sports leagues about potential partnerships to promote enrollment in the president’s health law this summer and fall.
Sebelius said at the time that she has had conversations with the NFL, whose representatives are “very actively and enthusiastically engaged because they see health promotion as one of the things that is good for them and good for the country.” - Politico, 6/28/13
McConnell and Cornyn, who comes from a huge football state, don't want organizations like the NFL to help promote the law because it'll make it more popular if athletes help explain the law to more people:Brian McCarthy, vice president of communications at the NFL, said in an email that the league has responded to letters they received from members of Congress.
"We currently have no plans to engage in this area and have had no substantive contact with the administration about (Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act's) implementation," McCarthy said. - CNN, 6/28/13
McConnell, Cornyn and the GOP have failed over and over again to repeal Obamacare so the only thing they can do is keep people ignorant about the law's impact and dupe voters into believing whatever lies they tell them. Plus the law goes into affect next year and McConnell did say that Obamacare would play a role in next year's election:Beginning this fall, Americans will be able to access new online marketplaces via a government website (HealthCare.gov) and shop for private insurance plans. According to the Associated Press, roughly 7 million people are expected to sign up for coverage in the new exchanges by the end of 2014. But in order for that to happen, Americans first need to know about them. (The GOP is hoping the roll-out is a quiet disaster, while Obamacare itself is a loud one.) That's where the HHS outreach effort comes in. In addition to the NFL, Sebelius has said the administration is also looking to everyone from religious groups to community groups to help spread the word. - Slate, 6/28/13
McConnell's right. Obamacare will be making a big comeback this year but not the way he wanted it to. Democrats, even the vulnerable ones, are actually getting ready to campaign on the Affordable Health Care Act:“I don’t know what the issues will be next year. If I were predicting what’s likely to be the biggest issue in the 2014 election, I think it would be Obamacare,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said on NBC News’s “Meet The Press.” “I think it’s coming back big-time.” - Washington Post, 5/19/13
McConnell and Cornyn are hoping 2014 will be just like 2010 but they're in for a rude awakening.Democrats, meanwhile, rather than declaring victory and shifting to other topics, are betting that the issue is a winner for November and are going on the offense against their Republican counterparts.
The most encouraging poll for Democrats is a recent Kaiser Family Foundation survey that shows a slight uptick in support for Obamacare after the Supreme Court's ruling, with 56 percent of the public wanting the law's detractors to move on to other issues. Another Washington Post-ABC News poll found that views toward the Affordable Care Act are more divided than they were in May. On average, however, more Americans continue to oppose the law than support it.
There is strong support, however, for individual provisions within the law. Those include allowing young adults to stay on their parents' health care plans, barring insurers from discriminating against individuals with preexisting conditions and prohibiting insurance companies from charging women higher premiums than men.
In a new memo provided to The Huffington Post, Democratic pollster Anna Greenberg argues that in light of this data, Democrats should not shy away from attacking Republicans on the substance of repeal.
"There might be one school of thought that would say, we should push back on repeal as a distraction that they're not really focusing on the economy," Greenberg said in an interview. "It's fine to say that, but I think there's more power in pointing out specifically what they would take away from people, and that they would do nothing to fix the problems that we have in the health care system." - Huffington Post, 6/10/13