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Dylan Scott

Dylan Scott is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. He previously reported for Governing magazine in Washington, D.C., and the Las Vegas Sun. His work has been recognized with a 2013 American Society of Business Publication Editors award for Best Feature Series and a 2010 Associated Press Society of Ohio award for Best Investigative Reporting. He can be reached at dylan@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by Dylan

For the last couple months, the Republican critique of Obamacare has been founded on President Barack Obama's broken promise: "If you like your health plan, you can keep it." It was a pledge that the health care reform law wouldn't disrupt the existing insurance system, that those satisfied with the status quo would be protected from any unwanted intrusion.

It's been an effective line of attack, given the sinking approval ratings for both Obama and his eponymous insurance expansion. Which makes the new GOP alternative to Obamacare, proposed Monday by three Republican senators, a bit baffling. Because the bill seems to based on another fundamental disruption of the individual insurance market -- and on top of that, it could upend the employer insurance universe, through which most Americans receive health coverage, forcing many to either pay more or lose their coverage.

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Senate Republicans have proposed another bill, the GOP's third in the last few months, to repeal and replace Obamacare.

The legislation is put forward by Republican Sens. Orrin Hatch (UT), Tom Coburn (OK) and Richard Burr (NC). It would begin, like its predecessors, with repealing Obamacare.

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In their priorities for the federal government, Americans knocked reducing the federal deficit the furtherest down the list over the last year, according to a new poll from the Pew Research Center.

The percentage of Americans who named "reducing the budget deficit" as a top priority for the president and Congress fell from 72 percent in January 2013 to 63 percent in January 2014. That was the largest drop of the 20 issues that the poll studied.

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Americans view Democrats as more willing to work across party lines and Republicans as more extreme in their beliefs, according to a new poll from the Pew Research Center.

Asked to chose which party was more extreme in its positions, 54 percent of Americans picked the GOP, while 35 percent selected the Democrats. On the question of who was more willing to work with the other party, 52 percent pegged the Democrats, and 27 percent deemed Republicans more bipartisan.

On the ultimate question, though, of who could better manage the federal government, Americans were evenly divided: 41 percent said the Democrats, and 40 percent said the Republicans.

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Approval for the Affordable Care Act among those who have actually tried to sign up for it is dramatically higher than approval among the general public, according to a new poll.

About 46 percent of those who have attempted to enroll in Obamacare coverage say they support the law, the Associated Press-GfK poll found, while 31 percent say they don't.

Compare that to the 27 percent of the general public who say they support Obamacare, while 42 percent say they oppose it and 30 percent say they're neutral.

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The conventional wisdom is that Republicans running in 2014 will be campaigning against Obamacare, attempting to recreate the 2010 magic that saw them make massive gains in Congress and state governments, holding themselves in stark contract to Democrats who are responsible for what the GOP sees as a fatally flawed law.

That's the narrative, and that's what Republican strategists would have you believe. But comments -- or the lack thereof -- from some GOP candidates in state and national elections suggest that opposition might not be as ironclad as previously believed, as the Washington Post's Greg Sargent has documented. In at least one case, in fact, a Republican in one of the most competitive Senate races in the country effectively endorsed the expansion.

It's a huge shift from the "defund or repeal" mantra during the government shutdown of October, a possible indicator that some conservatives are recognizing that Obamacare is here to stay -- and that proposing to knock the newly enrolled off Medicaid is politically perilous.

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A solid majority of Kentucky Republicans support the state's decision to expand Medicaid under Obamacare, according to a new poll, standing in stark contrast to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's opposition to the provision.

The Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky poll, reported by NPR-affiliated WFPL, found that 60 percent of self-identified Republicans said they support expansion. In total, 79 percent of Kentuckians agree with Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear's decision to expand coverage to low-income people under the health care reform law.

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A federal judge has temporarily blocked a Missouri law that would have placed additional requirements on Obamacare's so-called navigators, groups that have received federal funding to help people sign up for coverage under the law.

U.S. District Judge Ortie Smith issued a preliminary injunction blocking enforcement of the navigator law. He suggested in his opinion that Missouri lawmakers did not have the authority to regulate the activities of navigators who were working on behalf of HealthCare.gov, the insurance marketplace run by the federal government, which is serving Missouri and 35 other states.

"The Court is of the view that any attempt by Missouri to regulate the conduct of those working on behalf of (HealthCare.gov) is preempted," Smith wrote in his order. "Missouri has opted not to be in the health insurance exchange business."

"Having made the choice to leave the operation of the exchange to the federal government, Missouri cannot choose to impose additional requirements or limitations on the exchange," Smith said. He added that those challenging the law "are likely to prevail" with their argument that the navigator law is preempted by federal statute.

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U.S. Olympic athletes have been warned by the State Department not to wear their uniforms outside the Olympic venues in Sochi, Russia, because of security concerns.

The Wall Street Journal reported Friday on a memo that the U.S. Olympic Committee had circulated to U.S. competitors.

"The U.S. Department of State has advised that wearing conspicuous Team USA clothing in non-accredited areas may put your personal safety at greater risk," the memo said.

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Three million Americans have now enrolled in private coverage through Obamacare, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Friday, reflecting a continued increase in sign-ups through the health care reform law.

Sebelius announced the new enrollment number during her remarks in Jacksonville, Fla., and they were reported by Bloomberg's Alex Wayne on Twitter. An administration official confirmed the figure to TPM.

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