The White House will launch a campaign to refocus attention on the benefits of Obamacare, after two months of coverage about the troubled rollout of HealthCare.gov, Politico reports.
The administration will focus on a different benefit each day leading up to the Dec. 23 deadline to enroll in coverage beginning Jan. 1. Democratic members of Congress, the Democratic National Committee, congressional campaign committees, and advocacy organizations will help to spread the message over the next three weeks.
White House press secretary Jay Carney said Monday that the administration would not be advertising the improved site to encourage people to visit at this time.
“The issue is not with the number of people coming to the website and enrolling,” he said, citing the heavy traffic to the site Monday. Carney said the priority for now is making sure HealthCare.gov is working as well as possible for those who visit.
However, with the site functioning far better now, the White House wants to reverse the botched rollout narrative, and return to the idea that the health care law is more than a website.
“HealthCare.gov met our self-imposed November 30 deadline, and even as we continue to make improvements to the website, we’ll also remind the public about how the Affordable Care Act is already making a positive difference in the lives of millions of Americans today,” said Josh Earnest, a White House spokesman.
The push is intended to restore faith both in the public and in Democrats in Congress, who have become increasingly concerned about losing voter support amid the problematic rollout.
Obama will kick off the effort with a White House event at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday.
What We're Following See More »
The National Defense Authorization Act passed the House this morning by a 375-34 vote. The bill, which heads to the Senate next week for final consideration, would fund the military to the tune of $618.7 billion, "about $3.2 billion more than the president requested for fiscal 2017. ... The White House has issued a veto threat on both the House and Senate-passed versions of the bill, but has not yet said if it will sign the compromise bill released by the conference committee this week."
"Republicans have elected Rep. Greg Walden (R-OR) the next chairman of the powerful House Energy and Commerce Committee. Walden defeated Reps. John Shimkus (R-IL) and Joe Barton (R-TX), the former committee chairman, in the race for the gavel" to succeed Michgan's Fred Upton.
"Democratic and Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee are working on legislation that would limit deportations" under President-elect Donald Trump. Leading the effort are Judiciary Committee members Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC). Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) is also expected to sign on.
Donald Trump has selected retired Marine Gen. James 'Mad Dog' Mattis as his secretary of defense, according to The Washington Post. Mattis retired from active duty just four years ago, so Congress will have "to pass new legislation to bypass a federal law that states secretaries of defense must not have been on active duty in the previous seven years." The official announcement is likely to come next week.