Republicans Look For New Battles As Health Law Fight Quiets
In the meantime, some sparring continues over the law, a new poll looks at Americans' attitudes on Obamacare, and Democrats continue their push to try to drum up support for the overhaul.
The Hill: GOP Goes Quiet On Obamacare
House Republicans have no scheduled votes or hearings on Obamacare, signaling a shift in the party’s strategy as the White House rides a wave of good news on the law. Not a single House committee has announced plans to attack the health care law in the coming weeks, and only one panel of jurisdiction commented to The Hill despite repeated inquiries (Viebeck, 5/12).
Politico: Bachmann, Wasserman Schultz Spar On CNN
Some clear tension arose between Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann during a segment Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union," as the two went head to head on a handful of issues, starting with the new Benghazi select committee in the House. "Republicans have clearly lost the ability, because we've had such a precipitous drop-among Republicans even-in their fervor for repealing the Affordable Care Act, that they are clearly doing this to drive their turnout," Wasserman Schultz said. "No, Candy, Candy, that is not true at all," Bachmann interjected to CNN host Candy Crowley (McCalmont, 5/11).
CNN: CNN Poll: Should Obamacare Be Kept Or Repealed?
A majority of Americans want to keep the federal health care law as is, or make some changes to improve it, according to a new national poll. But a CNN/ORC International survey released Sunday also indicates public attitudes have been largely unaffected by news that 8 million people have enrolled in health insurance plans under the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare. Despite a victory lap by the White House following the release of that number, only 12 percent of Americans surveyed consider the law a success. Nearly half say it’s too soon to tell, and just under four in 10 consider it a failure. ... According to the poll, 61 percent want Congress to leave the Affordable Care Act alone (12 percent) or make some changes to the law in an attempt to make it work better (49 percent) (Steinhauser, 5/11).
Reuters: Democrats Struggle To Win Over Skeptical Americans On Obamacare
Barack Obama and his Democratic allies in the U.S. Congress have grown more confident in recent months about their ability to use the president's signature health care law as a draw rather than a liability in this November's midterm elections. Three races in New Hampshire illustrate the challenge, ... The president has urged Democrats campaigning in the Nov. 4 congressional elections not to run away from "Obamacare", but instead to "forcefully defend" it. ... New Hampshire, which is closely divided between Democrats and Republicans, is one of about 10 states where Republicans hope to make gains (Cornwell, 5/11).
The Washington Post: Liberal Groups Launch Campaigns To Boost Turnout Based On Obamacare Support
Democrats and Republicans agree on one thing about the hotly contested Affordable Care Act: When it comes to voter intensity, the GOP holds a clear upper hand. But a trio of major liberal groups hopes to change that in coming months, with plans to spend tens of millions of dollars persuading residents in a dozen key states to vote for Democrats based on the issue. ... By focusing on more popular parts of the law — including Medicaid expansion, free birth-control coverage and a bar on denying coverage for preexisting conditions — the [The Service Employees International Union, the Planned Parenthood Action Fund and MoveOn.org] hope to coax individuals who often skip voting in midterm elections to make it to the polls (Eilperin and Somashekhar, 5/10).
But just because elected Republicans are slowing down their health law attacks, doesn't mean all conservatives are --
Politico: Koch Brothers’ Americans For Prosperity Plans $125 Million Spending Spree
The Koch brothers’ main political arm intends to spend more than $125 million this year on an aggressive ground, air and data operation benefiting conservatives, according to a memo distributed to major donors and sources familiar with the group. ... AFP developed “a sophisticated new media message-testing strategy to target specific demographics in specific locations we need to move on our issues,” according to the memo. The resulting advertisements increasingly have used personal stories, often told by regular folks looking directly into the camera, to critique Democratic policies like Obamacare, and the politicians who support them (Vogel, 5/11).