It’s all over, Obamacare haters! Why they’ve officially lost the battleFirst Read:
With success stories, over 7 million sign-ups and a shift in public opinion, it's time for the right's white flag
What happens if the negative health care headlines go away?Some conservatives are admitting defeat.
It’s safe to say that Monday was the Obama White House’s best health-care day since the law passed. NBC News confirms that enrollment in the exchanges is on track to hit or surpass 7 million -- which was the original goal before the website woes of October and November. And while it very well might an outlier, a new Washington Post/ABC poll shows that support for the law, for the first time we can remember in some time, is now right-side up, with 49% supporting the law and 48% opposing it. (We’re taking the poll with a grain of salt for now until we see more numbers post-enrollment deadline, but at a minimum, it’s an important political booster shot for Democrats, even if it is just for today.) Now with the end of enrollment, Republicans face this potential challenge: What happens if the negative headlines go away?
But it's clear now that one scenario with a lot of purchase among conservative opponents of Obamacare -- that the law would "implode," "collapse" or "unravel" -- is highly unlikely. A quick death spiral was always a remote possibility, even if the early troubles of the exchange websites made it look a little less remote. Many congressional Republicans wanted to believe the idea, though, especially because they viewed it as one more reason they could avoid coming up with their own health-care agenda. (This was illogical -- if the program was going to self-destruct in months, wouldn't the country need a replacement ready? -- but the psychological impulse was to avoid grappling with health-care issues.)Ross Douthat:
We don’t know yet what the paid enrollment looks like or how successfully the program is actually enrolling the uninsured. (After some grim estimates, this Rand study is making liberals feel a little more optimistic, but still suggests a below-expectations result.) We don’t know what the age-and-health-status composition of the enrollee pools looks like or what that means for premiums next year and beyond. We don’t know if any of the suspended/postponed provisions of the law will actually take effect. And we certainly don’t know what any of this means for social policy in the long run.More politics and policy below the fold.
But we do know that there won’t be an immediate political unraveling, and that we aren’t headed for the kind of extremely-low-enrollment scenario that seemed conceivable just a few months ago, or the possible world where cancellations had ended up outstripping enrollment, creating a net decline in the number of insured. And knowing that much has significant implications for our politics.
Understanding Special Enrollment Periods, Part 1: A Look at Some Who Will be Out of LuckThink you know about Susan B Anthony and voting rights for women? Think again. This, from Corrine McConnaughy:
Why, then, am I asking you to forget Susan B. Anthony? Certainly not because she was unimportant to the suffrage movement — an impressive political marathon that lasted more than 70 years. Rather, as I argue in my recent book, “The Woman Suffrage Movement in America: A Reassessment,” fixation on a figure like Anthony eschews the most important political lessons of the movement. Anthony — who had died more than a decade before passage of the Anthony Amendment — was actually quite disconnected from much of the politics that delivered the movement’s policy successes. Those politics were politics of coalition-building and partisan maneuvering, neither of which were great strengths of Anthony’s. And understanding the politics of the movement’s policy successes helps us to understand the politics of voting rights generally speaking — to understand that women’s history is relevant to both political history and contemporary politics.Read it and learn something about cialition politics.
Contrast how The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal frame the Obamacare news on their front pages:
Alec MacGillis and Jonathan Cohn have fun with Fox News graphics.