One of the many reasons why Mitt Romney lost in 2012 was that he was the only candidate who couldn’t get away with challenging Obamacare. After all, much of the plan was based on the program he had cobbled together for Massachusetts as the state’s governor. This was a real Catch 22 considering how star-crossed the Affordable Care Act law was from the get-go. The bill was so lame that it needed to be passed using the nuclear option in Congress and without a single Republican up vote.
Unlike Romney, Donald Trump has no such restraints and is free free to bash Obama’s failed signature program as much as he wants.
Last night the Obama administration handed Donald Trump a huge gift, as the Whie House finally conceded what the rest of us knew all along. Health care premiums under the law have been skyrocketing as insurers drop out left and right:
Obamacare premiums will soar in 2017, the administration acknowledged Monday, with the price of the most popular benchmark plans jumping an average of 22 percent as the law continues to rely on older, sicker customers than its backers had envisioned.
The number of insurers offering plans on the federally run exchange will also plummet as companies tap out, saying they can’t figure out a way to make the economics work — and raising the risk of lower competition and worse premium increases.
Roughly one in five customers will have only a single insurer as an option next year after major players such as UnitedHealth Group and Aetna withdrew from most states and nearly all of Obamacare’s co-op plans failed.
This is the Obama administration admitting that prices are going way up as choices go away. Voters have already rejected Obamacare with their midtem election votes in 2010 and 2014. Now that the law is crashing and burning, what a great opportunity.
The Democrats’ solution to the failure of Obamacare is the single payer health care system where the government, rather than private insurers, pays for health care costs. Single payer was a hard sell in 2008 and has proved to be even harder sell now after eight years of government-managed health care.
Which is Trump comes in. He should be pounding home the message to the American people of the failure of Obamacare and what Hillary Clinton will replace it with. The gift is there, waiting to be unwrapped. The only question is will he?
Cross-posted at The Lid