Despite Hitting 7M, Obamacare Faces Plenty Of Challenges
Big tests await the health law, including whether premiums and other consumer costs can be held down in the face of pent up demand and also the GOP's continuing efforts to sabotage or repeal it heading into the midterm elections.
The Associated Press: 7M Enrolled Doesn't Guarantee Health Law's Success
Big challenges are lurking for the next enrollment season, which starts Nov. 15. Chief among them are keeping premiums and other consumer costs in check, and overhauling an enrollment process that was advertised as customer-friendly but turned out to be an ordeal. ... The source of the pent-up demand that propelled health care sign-ups beyond expectations could stem from the nation's new economic reality: a shrinking middle class and many working people treading water in low-paying jobs. Health insurance has been one of the pillars of middle-class security for decades. With fewer jobs these days that provide health benefits, there was an opening for a government program to subsidize private insurance (Alonso-Zaldivar, 4/5).
Politico: Obama’s Challenge: Don’t Blow It
Obama’s got a history of watching his victories slip away before fully capitalizing on them. Last year alone, his reelection bump disappeared into a triple whammy of low-grade spring scandals. Then, all the goodwill he had coming out of the government shutdown was eclipsed by the devastating HealthCare.gov rollout. Not only does this give him a chance to show that he and his party actually can be trusted to run government and a shot at reclaiming the narrative of his presidency, it comes just in time for the midterm elections that will determine his party’s fate in 2014 — and his own over the next three years (Dovere, 4/6).
NPR: With Enrollee Goal Met, Obamacare Still Faces Political Trial
President Obama and his supporters had a rare opportunity to celebrate this week. A last-minute surge in people signing up for health insurance sent the total government enrollment figures over the seven-million mark. That number seemed out of reach just a few months ago, when a crash-prone website threatened to undermine the president's signature health care law. Republicans are still bent on repealing the law, but now millions more Americans have a stake in Obamacare's survival (Horsley, 4/5).
ABC News: Obamacare: What Could Go Wrong Next?
After an unprecedented, last-minute surge, the Affordable Care Act open-enrollment period closed last week, topping out at more than 7 million enrollees. But even as a triumphant White House celebrated surpassing its enrollment goal, Republican strategists were downplaying its significance. Though Obamacare undoubtedly hit a major milestone March 31, the path ahead could still be a rocky one. Here’s a look at the challenges that remain for the president’s signature health care reform law (Dooley, 4/7).