This says less about White House outreach, I think, than the difficulties of engaging the poor and disaffected on policy, but it’s amazing either way. The idea that anyone could be beyond the grasp of a massive presidential education campaign about a splashy new program in the information age is mind-boggling to blog writers and readers, yet here we are. That’s not to say Team Hopenchange couldn’t have done better — remember when they told lefty groups to go easy on publicizing enrollment lest the surge of users crash the website? — just that there’s a lot of civic ignorance to overcome if they want to hit their target for “young healthies” enrolling on the exchanges.
The survey from Enroll America, a non-profit healthcare enrollment coalition, found that 68 percent of uninsured adults had not yet logged onto their online exchanges.
A similar number, 69 percent of the uninsured, still lacked knowledge about tax subsidies and other financial help designed to make the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, affordable for many, the survey said.
“Large proportions of the uninsured are also still in the dark about deadlines and that brand new plans are available,” Enroll America said in a report about the survey…
It found that eight in 10 uninsured adults were unaware of the need to sign up for insurance by March to avoid a fine, under the so-called individual mandate.
Tax-refund time this year is going to be awfully interesting. Meanwhile, 43 percent of Latinos surveyed said they weren’t aware of Healthcare.gov, which is also partly the White House’s fault and also mind-boggling after three months of relentless media coverage of the site’s problems. The Enroll America topline numbers aren’t wildly different from Gallup’s latest numbers, either. Just a week ago, Gallup reported that only 26 percent of the uninsured had visited an exchange website so far. That was just a six percent increase from October and November despite the news about deadline-shifting and a new and improved Healthcare.gov re-launching in early December. Not all of that is due to ignorance, of course — some people are too poor to afford Internet access and older people might shy away from anything Internet-related. But like Reuters says, some of this is pure unawareness.
The fact that the 18-29 column is the biggest will make the White House happy given that the stability of the exchanges depends upon “young healthies” signing up. They’ll be less happy to see why people who passed on signing up did so:
The assumption all along has been that Healthcare.gov’s technical problems were driving eager consumers away, but if you believe the Consult’s data, not-so-affordable care is a bigger issue at this point then glitches are. That’s not the only bad news for the White House either: The same poll finds that undecided voters split 24/65 on whether they approve or disapprove of ObamaCare. When asked which party they plan to support in the midterms, they split 54/46 for the GOP. News about the law’s stupendously botched rollout did reach some voters. In fact, per Jim Geraghty, another new survey has support for repeal up to 48 percent. That’s higher than it is in most polls, but rising support for repeal or repeal-and-replace is in line with what Kaiser found in its last monthly survey. Repeal/replace reached 42 percent in December there, up from 37 percent in October. That was the second-highest level in nearly three years.
Via the Free Beacon, here’s Pelosi scolding a reporter today for calling ObamaCare “ObamaCare” instead of the “Affordable Care Act.” For once, I think that’s less a case of a Democrat trying to shield The One from being branded by his own boondoggle than Pelosi being irritated that he’s getting all the credit for a project that she, more than anyone else, was responsible for enacting. Exit question: “PelosiCare”?