Saturday, November 30, 2013


Given the way Barack Obama ran his presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2012, he relied heavily upon securing the support of low information voters. As we know all too well, no chanting point was more prolific than "if you like your health care plan, you can keep it." Unfortunately, far too many Americans have learned that is not the case, despite Obama supporters being forewarned.

Upon the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, many began to dub the law "Obamacare." Since a vast majority of right-of-center politicos and voters alike saw this law as an unmitigated disaster, it would only makes sense to remind all Americans who was responsible for such a quagmire. Hence all the Republican candidates in the 2012 race for President never called the law any name but Obamacare.

Ever indignant, President Obama owned up to the label at a campaign stop just last year.

“We passed Obamacare — yes, I like the term — we passed it because I do care, and I want to put these choices in your hands where they belong,” Obama said at a typical stop in Iowa last October.

So in light of certain developments last week, can we assume President Obama no longer cares?

President Barack Obama and loyal Democrats once embraced the term Obamacare to sell the American people on health care reform.

Not anymore.

With the president’s approval ratings at record lows, a broken website and Obama under fire for his pledge that people could keep their plans, the “Affordable Care Act” has returned.

The president didn’t say “Obamacare” once during his nearly hourlong news conference last week, while he referred to the “Affordable Care Act” a dozen times. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi went so far as to correct David Gregory on “Meet the Press” Sunday on the proper terminology. And White House talking points distributed to Democrats and obtained by POLITICO repeatedly refer to the Affordable Care Act in suggested sound bites, not Obamacare.

Now, the phrase is vanishing from official use. White House website posts in July (“Obamacare in Three Words: Saving People Money”) and late September (“What Obamacare Means for You”) called the health care law the O-word. But now is almost entirely scrubbed of “Obamacare” and the law is called the Affordable Care Act in nearly every instance. Health insurance exchanges run by states don’t use the term Obamacare at all. 

In a meeting with White House officials earlier this month, Congressional Democrats openly expressed their frustrations with not being given political cover for the Obamacare disaster. So is this tactic of emphasizing the official title of "Affordable Care Act" going to give the Democrats the political cover they'll need in 2014? I have my doubts, especially since the way the law is crafted makes health coverage even less affordable.

As of right now, there is absolutely zero reason why the Republicans should emphasize any issue other than Obamacare the "Affordable Care Act" in the upcoming election cycle. As of right now anyways, they know that all too well.


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