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Horowitz: Obamacare - Here to Stay and on the Right Track

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

 

This past Thursday morning, there was an unusual substitute for press secretary Jay Carney at the daily White House news briefing—the President himself. President Obama took the podium to highlight the fact that sign-ups on health exchanges for Obamacare ended up exceeding 8 million, more than a million over the well- publicized 7 million CBO estimate and far beyond the predictions of various Republican and Conservative premature gravediggers.

The success of this first period of open enrollment, which ended April 1, came despite the initial serious difficulties with the website and aggressive and well-funded efforts to dissuade people from signing up. According to the White House, other features of the Affordable Care Act have resulted in health care coverage for an additional 6 million people and counting: 3 million young adults who can now stay on their parents' plan until they are 26; and 3 million more people enrolled in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Since one can enroll at any point during the year for these programs, the numbers will continue to increase.

Further, 28% of the people who purchased private insurance through the exchanges are between the ages of 18 and 34. This is substantially lower than their 40% share of the population, but in line with insurance company estimates and comparable to the first year of the successful Massachusetts program. Boding well for keeping down increases in premiums in future years, 5 million more people are now enrolled in plans that meet Affordable Care Act standards outside the exchanges. By the requirements of the new law, this additional pool of people must be factored in when insurance companies set premiums for next year..

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) now estimates that twelve million more people will have health insurance in 2014 due to the new law. This is a factual rejoinder to the repeated arguments by conservatives that the number of net new people insured was going to be slight or non-existent due to people losing their existing insurance policies because they did not meet the requirements of the Affordable Care Act.

It will take a while for public opinion to catch up with Obamacare’s success. While there has been a significant improvement in approval for the law since its low water mark just after the disastrous role out of the federal website, it remains unpopular. And it is particularly unpopular with the older and white voters that make up a disproportionate share of the electorate in Congressional mid-term elections.

The long-term picture, however, looks quite favorable. As with any comprehensive reform, tweaks and changes are needed. But over-all, it is working as envisioned, providing access to quality health care to many more Americans and assisting in putting the breaks on health care costs. It is a consequential accomplishment—one worth all the extensive political capital the President has spent and continues to spend on it.

Rob Horowitz is a strategic and communications consultant who provides general consulting, public relations, direct mail services and polling for national and state issue organizations, various non-profits and elected officials and candidates. He is an Adjunct Professor of Political Science at the University of Rhode Island.

 

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Comments:

Why don't you libs wake up and smell what you're shoveling! Obamacare is and was never about healthcare,It's about control,It's one of the cornerstones of socialism. Wait and see where this thing is going before declaring the ACA a success...get off the Obamacare bandwagon and get real because this is just one part of a grand plan and overreach that will eventually control every aspect of your life.

Comment #1 by LENNY BRUCE on 2014 04 22

Show me how premiums have gone down as promised. I've seen major increases in my insurance costs.

Show me how deductibles have gone down. They've gone up instead.

Show me where catastrophic health plans have gone for those who want insurance to cover big health problems, not every diddly thing. They've been eliminated.

Show me how many of those 8 million sign ups are Medicare sign ups.

Show me how many of those 8 million sign ups are actual paying customers.

Show me how many people have had the plans they liked for years eliminated.

Show me how many of those new insurance plans are now being paid for by government subsidies -- that is being paid for by other people.

Comment #2 by Art West on 2014 04 22

hmm. not one word about Medicaid.......

Comment #3 by john paycheck on 2014 04 22

... are Medicaid sign ups that is.

Comment #4 by Art West on 2014 04 22

Obamacare—the brilliant idea of the great divider: Barack Hussein Obama—rammed down our throats by the Democrats with no Republican input allowed.

Comment #5 by James Berling on 2014 04 22

You've got to be joking, Horowitz. The government passes a law that effectively makes most, if not all, individual health care plans in existence non-compliant. The 7 million or so individuals who were consequently impacted maybe signed up for insurance through an Obamacare plan is now considered a success?

God help us.

Comment #6 by Ben Algeo on 2014 04 22

There are plenty of legitimate reasons to criticize Obama-Romney-Care. But if I had a dollar for every lie from the righties about the ACA I would be a BILLIONAIRE. From the loony Sarah Palin's lies about "Obama Death Panels" to the warning by a Arizona GOPer that folks who sign up for the Obama-Care could be forced to donate a kidney to a gay black man in San Francisco ..LOL Then there is the crying PAID ACTOR "mother" with tears running down her face in the anti-Obama-Care TV commercial with her kids (not her children but really cute kids who are also PAID ACTORS) reads a PHONY letter from a PHONY health insurance company, .. how deceitful .LOL

Comment #7 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 04 22

Just a note to Mr. Horowitz, to placate the righties, in future articles please refer to our Marxist-Dictator-President as ..
barack HUSSEIN !!!obama

Comment #8 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 04 22

Aye Carumba, Sammy. You're bringing up lies?

Harry Reid: "The reform we are pursuing … not only means making sure you can keep your family's doctor or keep your health care plan if you like it but also that you can afford to do so."

And the big one repeated over and over and over:

"At the same time — I just want to be completely clear about this; I keep on saying this but somehow folks aren't listening — if you like your health care plan, you keep your health care plan. Nobody is going to force you to leave your health care plan."
-- President Obama

And if the employer mandate kicks in, these lies are going to unfortunately be even more clear, even for dopes who aren't paying attention.

Comment #9 by Art West on 2014 04 22

Art West
For some strange reason you did NOT mention
1.Sarah Palin's loony "Obama Death Panels"
2. The GOP "warning" that folks who signed up for Obama care, could be forced (against their will) to donate a kidney to a Black Gay man in San Francisco
3, The thousands of LIES about Obama-Romney-Care
4 Or the fact That Willard Romney INVENTED Obama-Romney_care

Comment #10 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 04 23

Mr West
Don't forget that it's barack HUSSEIN !!! ..Obama
HUSSEIN ...HUSSEIN ,,, HE LEGALY CHANGED HIS NAME FROM
Jayson Andrew Obama according to Rush Limbugh

Comment #11 by Sammy Arizona on 2014 04 23

Actually, Sammy, “death panels,” a hyper-provocative term for the Independent Payment Advisory Board provision in the ACA, would ration healthcare via rate setting. Even Howard Dean (a doctor, BTW) has come out against it in a WSJ op-ed:

"One major problem is the so-called Independent Payment Advisory Board. The IPAB is essentially a health-care rationing body. By setting doctor reimbursement rates for Medicare and determining which procedures and drugs will be covered and at what price, the IPAB will be able to stop certain treatments its members do not favor by simply setting rates to levels where no doctor or hospital will perform them."

Voila, death panel.

I have no knowledge about the hyperbolic GOP rhetoric you mention, but I wouldn't doubt if sick folks could be forced to donate organs. Collectivism has little respect for individuals you know.

Romney certainly did sign Romneycare into law. It's one reason he wasn't elected.

But for lies, Obama still takes home the big prize -- man, this is the president selling a lemon based on his rabid ideology. That's stunning and chilling Big Brother stuff.

Comment #12 by Art West on 2014 04 23

Don't waste your time, Art, Sammy obviously has no interest in being objective. Ignore the Sammy's of the world and try to convince as many people as possible who are willing to listen to reason to vote to get these statists out of office.

Comment #13 by Ben Algeo on 2014 04 23

Ben,

I hear ya. Even so, epiphanies have happened before...

Comment #14 by Art West on 2014 04 23




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