The President is in Florida today, scheduled to give an address in Miami at 1:55 on the subject of healthcare. (Which means it will probably start closer to 2:30 if history is any guide.) Normally an end of term speech would be little more than yet another pitch to help his party’s nominee to replace him, but this one promises to be something different. Obamacare has been collapsing under its own weight for a while now and we may finally be hearing a backhanded admission of this from Barack Obama. He’s going to be pleading his case to the voters, hoping to drive enrollments back up and salvage what’s left of the program. But at the same time, we’re told that he’s going to finally endorse some changes to the law to slow the free fall. (The Hill)
President Obama on Thursday will make a final pitch to the millions of Americans still lacking healthcare coverage as his administration enters its the fourth and final sign-up stretch.
The president’s most immediate task in his Florida speech will be convincing the 23 million people in the U.S. still without coverage to sign up on HealthCare.gov starting on Nov. 1.
He’s also seeking to convince GOP lawmakers in Florida and 18 other states to embrace ObamaCare’s expansion of Medicaid. Thirty-two other states have accepted the Medicaid expansion.
The President will have some work to do if he wants to meld his own previous positions with those of Hillary Clinton and many liberals who also dislike Obamacare, but only because it didn’t go far enough. Here’s the one we should really be watching out for. (Emphasis added)
Obama answered the calls of many progressives this summer by reaffirming his support for a government-run “public option” to compete alongside private options on the exchanges.
The President is expected to double down on his call to get more people enrolled, but he’s offering a stick this time rather than a carrot. He and Hillary Clinton agree that the penalties for people not bowing to the individual mandate should be even higher. But if that doesn’t work, he’s going to go back to the well and remind people that there’s still the public option to consider. Do you remember when that sort of complete, government run healthcare concept was roundly rejected during the initial debates over Obamacare? But some of us were warning you that Obamacare seemed almost designed to fail, and when it did the liberals would be pushing to go Full Canada on us.
Sometimes it really hurts to be right.
I’m not sure how much success the President should expect with this pitch. Even the media has taken note of how badly Obamacare is tanking with voters. Bloomberg recently predicted that, “Enrollment in the Obamacare insurance marketplace is likely to stall or even decline for 2017 as higher premiums drive away people who aren’t eligible for government subsidies, according to S&P Global Ratings forecasts.” Time magazine noted that even Democrats are waking up to public unhappiness over the fallout of the law and are more willing to criticize the program. People across party lines have become increasingly aware that the number of options available to them next year will be lower while their prices are rising across the board.
Obamacare if floundering and Hillary Clinton now apparently plans to “fix” it, with at least partial support from its originator. Between Obamacare collapsing (and taking an industry with it) or Hillary fixing it, I’m not sure which frightens me more.