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A party’s got to believe in something by @BloggersRUs

A party's got to believe in something

by Tom Sullivan

"Sorry, Blue Cross, my business is going elsewhere today," a friend wrote on Facebook yesterday. In states such as this one where the now-former governor peevishly rejected the Medicare expansion, prices have gone through the roof, as I noted a week ago. Health care costs are on a lot of people's minds. Health care is at the top of a lot of voters' lists of top election issues. Did I mention former NC governor Pat McCrory is a Republican?

The Washington Posts' Editorial Board advises the Republican Party that its efforts to repeal and/or sabotage Obamacare put it hopelessly out of step with voters:

The health-care message was hammered home in Virginia and Maine by huge electoral margins. In exit polls across the Old Dominion, 2 out of 5 voters identified health care as their top concern — more than twice as many as named any other issue. Among those health-care voters, 77 percent favored the Democratic candidate, Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam, who supports Obamacare and expanding Virginia’s Medicaid program under the law; just 23 percent backed the Republican, Ed Gillespie, who opposes both.

In Maine, a referendum to expand Medicaid under Obamacare, which would extend health insurance to some 80,000 low-income adults, won in a landslide, 59 percent to 41 percent. That was a direct rebuke to the Republican governor, Paul LePage, who vetoed Medicaid expansion five times after it was approved, also five times, by the state legislature.

For all the administration's efforts to kill Obamacare by a thousand cuts, including cutting off funds for enrollment assistance, sign-ups at HealthCare.gov for this year's enrollment period have roughly doubled over last year. Eric Levitz writes at New York magazine, "Obamacare didn’t just survive its death panel — it’s come back thriving."

An administration whose raison d'être is to jamb its fingers daily into as many eyeballs as possible just had its own poked in Virginia, Stooge-style.

CNBC reports on its exit polling of Virginia voters:

Exactly 50 percent of the voters polled said they support the Affordable Care Act, as Obamacare is formally known. A total of 39 percent of voters opposed the law.

Just 20 percent of voters said that Gillespie's support of a Republican effort in Congress to repeal Obamacare made it more likely that they would vote for him, according to the survey. Another 44 percent said it would make them less likely to vote for Gillespie.

In contrast, 47 percent of voters said Northam's opposition to the repeal effort made it more likely that they would support him, compared with 30 percent who said it would make it less likely they would vote for him.

Democrats have a winning issue on their hands if they'll simply take it and run with it. People ask what Democrats stand for? Start with universal access to health care.

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Request a copy of For The Win, my county-level election mechanics primer, at tom.bluecentury at gmail.