A few Democrats are beginning to understand that ObamaCare is beginning to turn into a political nightmare for them.
Democrats facing difficult reelection campaigns in 2014 — Sens. Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Kay Hagan of North Carolina and Mark Begich of Alaska — came out on Wednesday evening in support of extending the open enrollment period of the law, as first proposed by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire, who is also up for reelection in 2014.
Senate Republicans — and their campaign arm — are seeking to do anything and everything to tie Democrats like Pryor, Begich and Landrieu to Obamacare, betting they are on the wrong side of public opinion regarding the health care law. With web issues continuing to plague people’s abilities to sign up on the federal exchange, these Democrats are seeking to get ahead of GOP attacks.
Shaheen called the experience of trying to sign up for the insurance marketplaces “incredibly frustrating and disappointing” and said the system is “riddled with problems.” In that light, Shaheen wrote a letter to President Barack Obama saying that the open enrollment period should be pushed past March 31, given that the exchanges remain weighed down by problems more than three weeks after their rollout.
“I support extending the enrollment period to give people who haven’t had access or who want more choice enough time to shop from the 40 competitively priced plans in Louisiana’s marketplace. The administration should consider this common sense suggestion,” Landrieu said.
Both Begich and Pryor also indicated worry that people would get unfairly dinged by the $95 penalty if the website problems persist — a scenario that Manchin and Isakson are drafting legislation to avoid.
“I have repeatedly said this law is not perfect,” Begich said. “Given the recent website issues, I also support extending open enrollment season. I want to work with the administration to ensure that individuals are not unfairly penalized if technical issues with the website continue.”
Go here to Politico to read the rest. Republicans should oppose any delay. The Democrats wanted this mess and should wallow in it. It is a great pity that so many Americans will suffer as a result, but the American people last year had a chance to defeat ObamaCare by defeating Obama and the chance was blown. There are penalties that go along with wishful thinking, gross ignorance and indifference to facts, and with the implementation of ObamaCare we Americans are going to learn, once again, the truth of the observation of Benjamin Franklin:
Experience keeps a dear school, yet fools will learn in no other.