Thursday's HOT MIC
More liberal self-congratulatory celebrations because millions signed up for Obamacare. The number ended up being 8.8 million signups, down slightly from last year's 9.2 million.
There are two ways to look at the numbers: On the one hand, in a thriving marketplace, you would expect enrollment to grow every year. On the other hand, given the deep cuts that the Trump administration made to Obamacare advertising and the decision to have the sign-up window, the law has proven pretty resilient.
"We expect enrollment to grow every year, not to shrink. This market is likely to shrink," Caroline Pearson, senior vice president at Avalere, an independent consulting firm, told merecently, before open enrollment had ended. "It is a big deal, for a market that's already too small and unstable."
See? Toldja. Obamacare is popular and its working!
Obviously, there are more than two ways to look at the numbers. The realistic way to view them is that Americans are law-abiding and it's the law that you buy insurance. Duh.
Far more significant are the 25 million people who refuse to buy insurance or still can't afford it. If you're looking for a political statement about Obamacare, that's a far more telling number than people obeying a law to prevent the IRS from getting involved in their lives.
Even with generous federal subsidies that would lower premiums for most people to below $100 a month, 25 million people refuse the government's (and your) generosity.
If you're going to make a big deal out of 9 million people forced to buy insurance, why not the 25 million who don't? I'm sure it has something to do with the narrative or something.