The Affordable Care Act's enrollment comeback has confounded conservatives in many ways. The realization that there happens to be popular demand for something as self-evidently grotesque as Obamacare has given rise to a palpable cognitive dissonance on the right. A growing recognition among Republicans that they can't bank on organizing the midterm campaign around relentless Obamacare opposition has party elders looking at contingency plans (even if they haven't exactly gone back to the drawing board).
Think Republicans have been making fools of themselves? Blame Michael Needham.
Think Republicans Have been Making Fools of themselves? Blame Michael Needham.
The conversation about Obamacare shifted a bit over the weekend. Nobody has forgotten about the technical problems with healthcare.gov. But now critics are also focusing on something else: Reports of sharp premium increases that some individual consumers are facing. In the last few weeks, several hundred thousand Americans have received notices from their health insurance companies, effectively cancelling their existing policies. These consumers can get new policies, of course, but frequently they have to pay more for them.
You could make a good case that the last ten years have been relatively good for liberals. Democrats won two out of three presidential elections and controlled Congress for four years, two of them overlapping with the Obama presidency. It was a too-brief window, but during that time they managed to accomplish an awful lot—passing major of the financial sector, ending the war in Iraq, launching a major regulatory effort to tame climate change, formally allowing gays into the military, and finally passing something that looks like universal health care.
The GOP has obstructed Obama's ideas, but the reasons have been philosophical, not partisan. Or have they? A corporate-tax proposal is the tell.
Earlier this week, the Heritage Foundation released a new report, “The Fiscal Cost of Unlawful Immigrants and Amnesty to the U.S. Taxpayer,” that confounded nearly everyone who read it.
Think tank salaries are looking more and more like lobbyist salaries. That's no surprise.
Why are so many think-tank scholars being paid like lobbyists? Because they're acting like lobbyists, too.
Democrats didn’t see it coming: Before the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, neither congressional leaders nor the White House anticipated that one specific provision—the mandate requiring individuals to maintain a minimum level of health insurance—would spark such a ferocious political and legal backlash. Yet, nearly two years later, controversy surrounding the mandate dominates the national conversation about health care reform.
The closest thing Congress has to its own Tea Party takes place every Wednesday afternoon, in the Gold Room of the Rayburn House Office building.
Does the Republican Party have any ideas? The query may have a familiar ring. Five years ago, the question of substance was demanded incessantly of the Democrats. Indeed, in one of those intellectual fads that periodically sweep through Washington, the political class became obsessed with the notion that conservatives had unambiguously won what everybody was calling “the war of ideas.” The notion was everywhere. The right gloated.