Democrats: Don’t Run Away From Obamacare

Paul Krugman finds it  “puzzling — and disturbing — when Democrats like Charles Schumer, senator from New York, declare that the Obama administration’s signature achievement was a mistake.”

Citing some recent positive health care news from the Urban Institute, Krugman declares Obamacare a policy success.

“Yet it has not, of course, been a political winner for Democrats.”

“The Schumer critique … calls health reform a mistake because it only benefits a minority of Americans, and that’s not enough to win elections. What President Obama should have done, claims Mr. Schumer, was focus on improving the economy as a whole.”

“The point is that the pre-Obamacare system put many Americans at the constant risk of going without insurance, many more than the number of uninsured at any given time, and limited freedom of employment for millions more. So health reform helps a much larger share of the population than those currently uninsured — and those beneficiaries have relatives and friends. This is not a policy targeted on a small minority.”

And “economic management is about substance, not theater. Having the president walk around muttering ‘I’m focused on the economy’ wouldn’t have accomplished anything. And I’ve never seen any plausible explanation of how abandoning health reform would have made any difference at all to the political possibilities for economic policy.”

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  • nanotab

    I agree with Krugman. It would have been very diffucult to find a policy that could be embedded in legislation that Pres Obama could have signed that would have helped the U.S. economy and/or “average Americans” as much as the ACA has helped (and will almost surely help in the future). The hypothetical legislation that Schumer imagines would also surely have helped some Americans a lot more than others! The ACA hasn’t directly helped my family or my children’s families at all, but I believe it’s a tremendous help to the U.S. economy & to American society to have such a large decline in the % of the population without medical insurance.

  • Mike

    Keep it coming. No democrat other than those in gerrymandered districts or a very safe liberal state has survived the Obamacare vote. Keep the socialism coming. It is a huge loser.

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