Wednesday, March 26, 2014

On Obamacare, Substance, Not Smoke & Mirrors

While some of the media will try to bamboozle their audience today into thinking they know how the Supreme Court will decide the contraception-rights case heard on Tuesday, as our longtime readers know, we're not charlatans and we prefer to operate from known facts.

That doesn't mean we're not concerned with how the case will be decided this summer, or what it will means for this fall. The potentially disastrous outcome for the nation if the biased and intellectually dishonest corporate faction of the court wins is not hyperbole. Pointless speculation though, would only make us look as idiotic as many of our colleagues in the national media did last week, talking about the missing plane.

There have been plenty of facts coming out this week, on the fourth anniversary of Obamacare, about how the program is doing. Those facts may have as much to do with the outcomes of this fall's elections as either the Supreme Court decision, or all the money being poured into propaganda campaigns by right-wing billionaires.

One of those facts includes the announcement made late Tuesday night by the Obama Administration, that they will allow all those Americans who've begun enrolling in private health insurance plans through the Obamacare website, until mid-April to finish or file a formal extension. Next to the news that - unlike Nebraska - New Hampshire has decided to do the wise thing and pass Medicaid expansion, the news surrounding Obamacare seems to just keep solidifying into a positive, tangible outcome Democrats can campaign on this fall.

That's a far cry from the empty promises and complete lies about healthcare that Republicans and their supporters have heading into the 2014 election season.

As Sahil Kapur noted last Sunday, and as many of our colleagues have noted for years now, four years after claiming they would repeal and replace Obamacare with their own plan, Republicans still don't even have an alternative health care plan that their own members of Congress are willing to vote for.

What's more, as both Greg Sargent and Brian Beutler pointed out this week, the Republican sob stories and ads about how horrible Obamacare is keep evaporating. Multiple fact checkers keep revealing the lies in the multiple propaganda ads from Koch Brothers-supported groups. Even right-wing hacks like Matt Drudge are exposing themselves as frauds and charlatans on the issue of Obamacare.

The facts, as our friend Rick Ungar noted this past week, continue to roll in - and those few who are honest on the right will have to eat crow about Obamacare. The young people are indeed signing up - at the last minute, of course. Not surprisingly, women have proven better at men at navigating the tough decisions. Individual penalties have motivated a substantial number of Americans to push through the array of insurance choices and sign up.

For those Americans who have been underinsured, or who were uninsured and didn't get cut short by Republicans in their states, most Americans are now happy with the health care system in America, thanks in large part to the fact that millions finally have affordable health insurance.

That Obamacare has succeeded as well as it has is not a small accomplishment. It's a massive feat of political skill, applied to a huge problem that Democrats pulled off almost entirely on their own. What's more, Democrats used a Republican idea to accomplish this task over the last four years, while being attacked by extremist Republicans the entire time.

Democrats should be proud they have a major, substantive accomplishment to show voters this fall.

Republicans only have smoke and mirrors to show voters - along with millions of dollars in fruitless propaganda.

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