Thursday, December 5, 2013
Young People, 3Rs, and ObamaCare
Rhetoric, Results, and Reality
The New 3Rs for American Youth
Suddenly America’s young adults (18-29) have awoken to economic realities. They have come to the conclusion that rhetoric alone is no substitute for results and reality.
Up until now, President Obama’s rhetoric has been persuasive – that America has an unjust society, that health reform is needed to level the economic and health care playing fields, that health care should be a right, not a privilege, that it is a moral obligation of civilized society to provide access to health care.
For the young and idealistic, this is powerful rhetoric. It is a compelling argument, and the young have bought it by voting overwhelming for Obama in the last two presidential elections.
But now, after 5 years of the Obama presidency, the results are there for all to see - stagnant economic growth of less than 2%, unemployment rates of 15.9% among young adults, 90% of jobs part-time rather than full-time, rising debts averaging $28,000 among recent college graduates with no job on the horizon, and an ObamaCare program that calls for health care premium increases averaging somewhere between 50% to 100% even if one receives federal subsidies.
Reality has set in. For young adults, enrolling in ObamaCare through the health exchanges has become a hard sell. In a Harvard University Institute of Politics poll, only 41% of the young approve of President Obama’s overall performance, and a scant 34% approve of the health care law.
This does not bode well for ObamaCare. It is estimated that 15.7 million in the 19 to 29 age group lack insurance. The Obama administration needs 2.7 million of these young people to prevent a “death spiral, “ sharply increased premiums and deductibles for older voters due to failure of the young to financially support them. Without support from the young, the whole health law may collapse.
The young are not buying the ObamaCare argument. Only 22% plan to sign up, only 29% of those currently uninsured plan to enroll, 51% expect costs to rise, and 44% say quality will decline. At a White House Youth Summit this week, the President urged the young to talk up ObamaCare as an obligation to protect themselves and as a social good. But the young, now schooled in the new 3R’s, are saying the Rhetoric doesn’t match the Results and Reality.
Tweet: A Harvard University Institute of Politics polls indicates only 22% of young adults (aged 18 to 29) plan to enroll in an ObamaCare plan.