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Dems' Confidence Builds as Obamacare Improves Dems' Confidence Builds as Obamacare Improves

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Health Care Edge

Dems' Confidence Builds as Obamacare Improves

December 6, 2013

Dems' Confidence Builds As Obamacare Improves

There's no question Democrats are starting to feel more bullish about the Affordable Care Act.

They're aggressively defending the law this week--Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear was on Capitol Hill on Thursday to criticize Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell over his opposition to the law, saying it will come back to bite McConnell in his reelection campaign next year. Despite the law's strong results in Kentucky, it's hard to see Obamacare becoming a political weapon for Democrats in 2014. But it doesn't necessarily need to be. Democratic Senate candidates had a great year in 2012, despite the health care law, and some party strategists see no reason why the law should be a bigger liability next year--as long as it's not in the midst of a high-profile breakdown.

 

Democratic candidates would be perfectly happy not talking much about Obamacare in 2014, and attacking Republicans over it now largely is a way of getting back to neutral. Still, the party's increasing comfort with the law is a sign that they trust the White House's fixes and at least feel comfortable with their ability to defend the law on the campaign trail. Much like the website itself, that's a big improvement over just a few weeks ago.

Sam Baker

sbaker@nationaljournal.com

Top Health Care News

By Sophie Novack and Clara Ritger

STATES BENEFIT FROM EXPANDED COVERAGE FOR FORMER PRISONERS. Millions of previously incarcerated individuals will gain Medicaid coverage in states expanding the program, and it's set to save states money and improve public health.

OBAMACARE COSTING DEMOCRATS THE WHITE WOMEN THEY'LL NEED AT THE BALLOT BOX. Polls show that the left should be concerned about women when it comes to the health law.

NEW STUDY FINDS CHRONICALLY ILL WILL BE UNDERINSURED ON EXCHANGES. Cost-sharing helps but is not enough for patients with advanced medical conditions.

PERMANENT DOC FIX UNLIKELY TO HAPPEN BY YEAR'S END. Congress will most likely pass a short-term solution to stop a 20 percent cut in physicians' pay for Medicare services.

HOW OBAMA WANTS TO SWEETEN THE DEAL FOR INSURERS UNDER OBAMACARE. The little known "risk corridors" program is a big bailout for insurance companies.

CBO RELEASES HEALTH-RELATED OPTIONS FOR REDUCING THE DEFICIT. Most of the report's 16 options would decrease federal health care spending or increase revenue from 2014 to 2023.

LAWMAKER AND STAFF FEHBP PLANS WILL CONTINUE UNTIL JAN. 31, 2014. The D.C. Health Link enrollment site was down Thursday as aides were trying to sign up. 

FIVE STARTLING FACTS ABOUT PREGNANCY AND ABORTION IN AMERICA. The first? Fewer women are getting pregnant.

FDA EXPECTED TO APPROVE NEW, GENTLER CURE FOR HEPATITIS C. More than three million Americans are infected each year.

NASTY SURPRISE MAY AWAIT PEOPLE WHO THOUGHT THEY ENROLLED IN OBAMACARE. Call your insurer. It's time you had the talk. Give your reasons. It's (probably) not your fault.

THREE WAYS YOU CAN TELL THE HEALTH WEBSITE IS WORKING. No. 1? Republicans have stopped talking about it.

DEMOCRATS, FUMBLING NO MORE ON OBAMACARE. The party's offensive on the law continues.

IT'S HARD TO SIGN UP FOR OBAMACARE. It's much worse to be uninsured.

OPTING OUT OF MEDICAID EXPANSION COSTS BILLIONS. A Commonwealth Fund study finds that declining to expand Medicaid costs individuals in those states money without the benefits.

KENTUCKY GOVERNOR PROMOTES ACA AT CAPITOL. Dem. Gov Steve Beshear said Sen. Mitch McConnell's opposition to the law will hurt him in 2014.

Happening Today

FIELD HEARING ON OBAMACARE'S BROKEN PROMISES. The House Oversight Committee travels to Arizona to drum up more anti-health law angst at noon EST, 10 a.m. local.

AM I IN THE HOSPITAL, OR NOT? The Alliance for Health Reform holds a noon briefing on hospital admissions.

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