Democrats can’t “fix” a train wreck

There were no balloons and confetti this weekend to mark the fourth anniversary of the signing of the Affordable Care Act. The law has come the most polarizing issue in the country, one that is almost certainly going to play a role in the 2014 mid-term election.

CNN host John King went through the most recent poll numbers from Pew Research this weekend, noting that Obamacare “is on life support,” as 53% of Americans disapprove of Obamacare, while just 41% approve.

Facing the real possibility of a Republican wave this fall, Democrats have pivoted on the “fix” Obamacare message, one that didn’t do much good for them in the recent Florida special congressional election. Peter Suderman recently explained that the “fix” message doesn’t really make much sense because Democrats aren’t saying how they would do to actually address problems with the law:

Administration may extend Obamacare enrollment deadline for some

The White House has hinted that it may extended the Obamacare enrollment deadline for Americans who experienced technical problems on the state and federal exchanges, much like the administration did in December for those who wanted to sign up for health insurance coverage at the beginning of the year.

“March 31 was the deadline, as was the case for the December deadline, we’re going to want to make sure that people who are already in line can finish their enrollment,” White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters on Friday, pointing them to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for further explanation.

“We want to make sure, as we did in December, on that deadline, that folks who have begun the process are able to complete it,” said Carney. “We certainly expect, naysayers notwithstanding, that there’s going to be continued interest right up to the deadline, and that interest will probably increase as we approach the deadline.”

Today in Liberty: Republicans should brace for a bitter fight in 2014, Obama ups ante against Kony

“Where is the politician who has not promised to fight to the death for lower taxes — and who has not proceeded to vote for the very spending projects that make tax cuts impossible?” — Barry Goldwater

— What’s to come for Republicans: Erick Erickson has some wise words over at RedState this morning about what Republican-base voters should expect from Democrats, who are staring down potentially heavy losses this year. “What the Democrats will do to offset their turnout operation is voter suppression efforts. They will use every story possible to embarrass Republicans. Attacks on the Republican base; mischaracterization of statements; taking remarks out of context; highlighting unknown Republicans at the local, county, and state level who’ve said something that can be spun — you name it, the Democrats will do it,” wrote Erickson. “They will abandon the case for themselves and instead try to keep Republicans at home or embarrass them into voting for a Democrat. You will see the full media bias as national news networks, newspapers, and web sites focus on random local Republican politicians demanding to know if Candidates X, Y, and Z support that person’s remarks.”

Harry Reid thinks all of these Obamacare stories are lies

In a recent, shameful rant on the Senate floor, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) railed against issue ads highlighting horror stories from Americans who have been impacted by the consequences of Obamacare.

“Despite all that good news, there’s plenty of horror stories being told,” Reid complained. “All of them are untrue, but they’re being told all over America,” he said, before specifically targeting a Michigan woman, a cancer patient, who has been forced into a health plan she can’t afford.

The horror stories about Obamacare have been frequent — ranging from, but not limited to higher health insurance premiums and/or deductibles to a lack of in-network medical providers to canceled health plans — and they’ve uncovered serious flaws with the law.

The Washington Free Beacon has put together a short video touching on some of these stories, covering news reports from all 50 states. Just remember what Harry Reid says, everyone of these people are all liars. Or something:

CA-07: #LibertyKaraoke to host fundraiser for Igor Birman

Igor Birman

Coming off successful events for Reps. Justin Amash (R-MI) and Thomas Massie (R-KY), DC-area liberty activists have announced a #LibertyKaraoke fundraiser for Igor Birman, a Republican running in California’s Seventh Congressional District (CA-07).

This will be the third #LibertyKaraoke event for the 2014 cycle, but the first for a challenger. CA-07 is currently represented by Rep. Ami Bera, a Democrat.

#LibertyKaraoke: Igor Birman

Birman has a unique story. Born in the Soviet Union, his family immigrated to the United States when he was 13. He has related his experiences from living the then-communist country on issues like healthcare and domestic surveillance.

“Well, you could say that I was born into Obamacare,” Birman told United Liberty in a March 2013 interview. ”But what after all, what is Obamacare? Well, it is  government taking control of the decisions that rightfully belong to you and your doctor. The consequences of any government takeover [have] been shortages and rationing.”

“I was born into a system where government made the most intimate of healthcare decisions and ultimately decided what it will and will not pay for,” he added.

Birman’s background is one of the reasons #LibertyKaraoke decided to get behind his campaign.

Larry Sabato gives Nancy Pelosi a reality check on Obamacare

Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics, says that House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi isn’t living in reality if she believes that Obamacare is a winning issue for House Democrats running in swing districts.

“Look, Nancy Pelosi is from a deeply blue district. I have no doubt in her district, the San Francisco area, you can be for Obamacare and not have any electoral problems,” said Sabato during a Thursday appearance on Your World w/ Neil Cavuto. “The difficultly for Pelosi and the Democrats is, in every single reliable survey for more than a year a plurality or majority of Americans have been opposed to Obamacare, for a variety of reasons.”

The seven most recent survey show that an average of nearly 54% of Americans oppose Obamacare, while 39% support the law, according to Real Clear Politics. To find a survey in which support for Obamacare was above water, one has to go back to January 2013. Just eight polls taken since March 2011 found a net-positive support for Obamacare. That’s a stunning figure.

“She’s arguing the best defense is a good offense,” said Sabato. “The problem with that is when you’re on offense, using your time in the public arena to discuss a subject that people have more or less already made up their minds about, and they don’t like it, you’re wasting your time in the arena.”

LA Senate: Mary Landrieu a no show at event promoting Obamacare

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius visited New Orleans yesterday to promote Obamacare, part of the administration’s final push to boost enrollment before the clock runs out on March 31.

Guess who decided to skip out on the event? Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA), even though the Senate was not in session and no committee meetings were on the books, according to the chamber calendar. Bayou Buzz pointed out that Landrieu wasn’t mentioned on the official schedule sent out by HHS, nor was there any mention of her in The Times-Picayune’s coverage of the event.

Her brother, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, appeared alongside Sebelius to promote the unpopular law. He tweeted out this photo of him standing behind the HHS secretary, no Mary Landrieu to be found.

Landrieu avoided appearing with President Barack Obama when he visited New Orleans in November, claiming that she had another event scheduled. She did, however, travel with him in Air Force One.

Pelosi wants you to know that Obamacare is a winning issue — but don’t call it “Obamacare”

During her weekly press conference on Thursday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) again told reporters that Obamacare will be a winning issue Democrats in the 2014 mid-term election. But don’t you dare call it Obamacare!

The ex-House Speaker was responding to a question about whether “Obamacare is a winner or loser” for House Democrats in swing districts. “You have to ask the member,” Pelosi replied, “but I believe that it’s a winner.”

Pelosi then began an odd rant in which she chastised the report for calling the unpopular law “Obamacare.”

“By the way, it’s called the Affordable Care Act. It’s called the Affordable Care Act. I know you didn’t intend any compliment or derogatory — it’s called the Affordable Care Act,” said Pelosi. “And the Affordable Care Act, when people know what it is and see what it means to them.”

The reporter who asked the question noted that the only reason he used the term “Obamacare” is because President Obama himself has embraced it. “And I tell him the same thing I told you,” she replied with an awkward laugh. “Affordable. Affordable. There’s a reason. Affordable. Affordable. Affordable. Affordable. Affordable.”

CBO director warns of “unpleasant” choices on federal spending

The growth of federal entitlements programs is the biggest fiscal issue facing the United States, says CBO Director Doug Elmendorf, and it’s one that is going to require Washington to make some “unpleasant” choices, preferably sooner rather than later:

“So we have a choice as a society to either scale back those programs relative to what is promised under current law; or to raise tax revenue above its historical average to pay for the expansion of those programs; or to cut back on all other spending even more sharply than we already are,” Elmendorf said.

“And we haven’t actually decided as a society…what we’re going to do. But some combination of those three choices will be needed.”

Elmendorf said there are various ways to proceed: “But they tend to be unpleasant in one way or another, and we have not, as a society, decided how much of that sort of unpleasantness to inflict on whom.”

Though there’s a lot of attention paid to short-term deficits, this is symptomatic of a much, much larger problem. It’s not a new crisis, and it’s one that most people in Washington realize exists. The CBO has been pointing out these concerns for some time, most recently its September long-term budget report.

This analysis anticipated that spending as a percentage of GDP would rise to 26.2%, based on current law, and federal revenues will come in around 19.5%. The budget deficit as a percentage would be 6.4% and the public’s share of the national debt will hit 100%.

Today in Liberty: CNN stoops to a new low, our insurance salesman-in-chief

“The proverb warns that ‘You should not bite the hand that feeds you.’ But maybe you should if it prevents you from feeding yourself.” — Thomas Szasz

— CNN apparently now run by Alex Jones: CNN has been following the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 almost nonstop for several days now, seeing it as ratings gold. But the cable network’s coverage, which had already jumped the shark, fell to a new low last night when host Don Lemon asked panelists “is it preposterous” to think a black hole caused the plane to crash? CNN is still relevant, they said. Give it a chance, they said. It’s like they’re not even trying anymore.

— Insurance Salesman-in-Chief: The presidency used to be considered a prestigious office with heavy influence and gravitas. But the influence of the office has been reduced to appearances on radio and television talk shows as President Obama tries to sell his healthcare law to a skeptical public, the latest of which will be a live interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. The appearances are targeted to reach a certain audience and it’s probably a smart strategy to get a message to the crowd they’re trying to reach. At the same time, however, it’s just sad to see a president reduced to being a cheap insurance salesman. Well, that and a college basketball expert.


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