Thursday, August 14, 2014

Obama’s Broken Promises Coming Back to Haunt Him

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,

But I have promises to keep,

And miles to go before I sleep,

And miles to go before I sleep.

Robert Frost (1874-1963), Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening

President Obama has less than three months to go before the midterm elections, and he has promises he cannot possibly keep.

These promises include keeping your doctor and your health plans and lowering your premiums.

The Republicans will keep reminding voters of those millions of cancelled policies, even though the President has now promised they can keep them.

Health plans will keep raising premiums to compensate for losing those millions of young voters who have decided to keep their old policies and whose enrollment in expensive exchange plans was needed to keep premiums down for others.

The world of broken political promises is cruel.

As Robert Blendon, a policy expert on public opinion who hangs out at the Harvard School of Public Health, notes,” If there are double-digit increases, they will show up in ads, and people will take it as another sign that the law is going badly.”

Executives of for-profit health plans have their own promises to keep – market share growth, profits to make, and investors to satisfy. And they have another promise in their political hip pocket - if things go badly, the Obama administration has promised to bail them out.

The bailout is another promise President Obama may not be able to keep. Republican presidential candidates and candidate for the House and Senate, are already calling for a cancellation of the insurance bailouts.

Politically, how do you cancel a federal promise that was designed to cancel the effect of failed health plan cancellations? When you are out in the Open, in the midst of a political campaign, cancelling a promise that the public may not have been previously aware of, can be a tricky business.

President Obama is deep in the political woods, and he has promises to keep. How he and Democratic candidates for the House and Senate finesse these promises or cancel them will require political skill.

The ObamaCare woods are dark and deep,

President Obama has promises to keep,

With less than three months to go before he sleeps,

With less than three months to go before he sleeps.

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