Friday, January 31, 2014

Are  Obama and ObamaCare  Losers?

Show me a good loser and I’ll show you a loser.

Knute Rockne (1888-1931), Notre Dame football coach

Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.

Vince Lombardi (1913-1970) Green Bay Packers football coach

To begin by comparing football coaches and the game of football to a U.S. President and his political program  may be a tacky thing to do.   But who cares, it's Super Bowl time.

Besides, President ObamaCare is a very competitive person, the winner of two presidential elections, and I’m sure he will welcome the comparison because he believes he will win in the end..

At the moment, Obama and ObamaCare look like potential  losers, and Obama isn’t acting like a good loser, as he vows to lash out  against his opponents as obstructions  to going foreword  by going around them with unilateral executive actions. The other team is blocking his forward progress.

Characterizing President Obama as a loser, or as a lame duck,   is premature.   But it’s hard to argue with polls.   They show Obama in the high thirty or low forty percentages for most approval measures.  And there’s no quibbling with the most recent Kaiser Family Foundation poll.  Kaiser, an editorially independent organization, with no political ax to grind,  found the uninsured , who Obama has vowed  to help,  have an unfavorable view of ObamaCare by a 2:1 margin (47% to 23%).   Among all Americans, the poll finds,  the sentiment is also negative, 50% to 34%.

What’s gone wrong?  No doubt news that 5 to 10 million health plans being cancelled hurts.   So do stories of skyrocketing premiums and deductibles. Unquestionably  the botched rollout plays a role.  So too does ignorance of the law.  More than half say they are unaware of the subsidies.  Sixty eight percent  of uninsured haven’t even  bothered to sign up. Only 11% of those enrolling were previously uninsured.  Forty percent of those who tried to enroll failed.    More than half of those polled  have said they have more negative than positive stories about ObamaCare.   Bad news sells better than good news, which may be why ObamaCare is such a hard sell.

None of this bad news deters the Obama administration which has recruited thousands of ObamaCare explainors and translators.  It has spent $1.4 million in launching a good news publicity campaign,  featuring such celebrities as exercise guru, Richard Simmons,   Hollywood  celebrities , NFL stars, and other visible elites to sell the program,  all without avail, at least among the young (18-34) who so far represent only 20% of those signing up instead of the expected 40% needed to prevent an adverse selection death spiral.

Among those fleeing from and distancing themselves from the law are Democrats seeking reelection in red states,  the uninsured, independents, Republicans,  union leaders,  the young,  Hispanics, Tea Parties, and growing numbers of women,  A motley crew, you say. Perhaps, but collectively they represent a sizable chunk of voters.

To make matters worst,  a December Gallup poll indicates 72% of Americans regard Big Government as the greatest threat to the U.S.,  and a Fox poll this week found 74% of us think we're still in a recession, five years into the Obama Presidency. Add to these numbers those who see themselves as targets of Obama,  the famous 1%, the upper-middle class, Southern states, charter schools, private businesses, politically active conservatives, the Catholic Church, doctors driven out of Obama networks, and the Little Sisters of the Poor, and Obama has a problem on his hands (Daniel Henninger, "Obama's State of Disunion," Wall Street Journal, January 30, 2014).

Of course, it is not over until the voters vote,  Fat Lady sinks,  or the Old Gray Lady (The New York Times) and the other media elite run up a White Flag, which will never be. 

It’s a long, long way from February to November. But as of now, Obama and ObamaCare look like losers, and not good losers at that  as Obama  lambasts the obstructionists and evil-doers among us.

Tweet:   As we end January and enter February ,  Obama and ObamaCare  look like potential losers in November.

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