For the last few years, the RNC, top conservative think tanks, and several influential right-leaning bloggers have been trying to convince Americans that Obama’s claim about being able to keep your plan was wrong. A few news outlets also cautioned against the president’s promise. As early as June 2009, the Associated Press wrote that “no president could guarantee such a pledge.”

But for the most part, the mainstream media failed to aggressively pursue the story, taking Obama’s claim at face value without testing it against the facts. Meanwhile, congressional Republicans, who had given a burst of attention several years ago to the issue that people may lose their plans, moved on to critiquing other aspects of the legislation and the press coverage followed…

“Let’s face it, the media, particularly in Washington, can only focus on one big thing at a time. The reason this is happening now is because people are actually starting to get the cancellation letters,” said Glenn Kessler, the author of the Washington Post’s Fact-Checker blog, who on Wednesday gave Obama’s claim “four Pinocchios.”

“The best media story is a story with a victim, and now you have people who can hold up the [cancellation] notices that say, ‘You’ve lost your plan,’” he added. “Until now, it was very difficult to say definitively that the president was not correct, because that hadn’t happened yet.”