The White House Doesn’t Expect Obamacare To Get Popular Anytime Soon

Patrick van Katwijk/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

The poll this week that showed support for Obamacare narrowly exceeding opposition? Yeah, the White House didn’t buy it either.

Chuck Todd explained this morning.

“[White House aides] weren’t flaunting it. You know, they said, ‘Well, there is the one poll,’ but they were careful to say, ‘You know what, in all honesty, the numbers haven’t moved.’ You talk with the senior political aides, they’re like, ‘We see the same thing you do, the numbers haven’t moved, and we don’t think the numbers will move,'” Todd said on “Morning Joe.”

“In fact, I had one senior political aide who’s been with the president for nearly a decade say to me, ‘You know, we think the numbers on health care won’t move until the president leaves office.'”

On cue, the Washington Post-ABC News poll that found a new high in support for Obamacare was followed by a survey from Quinnipiac University showing the law’s popularity still deep underwater, where it’s languished pretty much since 2010.

Whether the law blossoms into a major success remains to be seen, but Republicans will almost certainly continue to undermine it for the duration of Obama’s presidency.

Obama said Tuesday that the “debate over repealing this law is over.”

“The Affordable Care Act is here to stay,” he insisted during an event at the Rose Garden.

Obama has made that assertion repeatedly since the last presidential election, a useful indicator of the GOP’s obstinacy on repeal.

In fact, his latest declaration of victory was preceded by the release of Paul Ryan’s budget, which calls for Obamacare’s repeal.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) then released his own plan on Wednesday to repeal and replace the law.

And here’s Bill Kristol, wondering what Republican “will stand up today and say something like this”:

No, Mr. President. No way, Mr. President. We do not accept, we do not acquiesce in, this deplorable piece of legislation. The debate is not over. The debate will continue. It must continue. What is at stake is sound health care policy for America. But what is also at stake is reversing your attempt, Mr. President, to transform a free country committed to limited government into merely another nation burdened with the worst aspects of big-government nanny-statism.

It’s safe to say Kristol won’t be disappointed.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Kludt is a reporter for Talking Points Memo based in New York City, covering media and national affairs. Originally from South Dakota, Tom joined TPM as an intern in late-2011 and became a staff member during the 2012 election. He can be reached at tom@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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