Florida Democrats Double Down on Obamacare

By: Kevin Derby | Posted: April 22, 2014 3:55 AM
Charlie Crist and Debbie Wasserman Schultz

Charlie Crist and Debbie Wasserman Schultz

Florida Democrats are increasingly defending President Barack Obama’s federal health-care law even as polls continue to show it remains unpopular with voters at the national level. 

From her perch as chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., doubled down on her support of the law during an appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday morning. Speaking to NBC’s David Gregory, Wasserman Schultz rejected the idea that Obama’s health-care law would hurt Democrats at the ballots in November. Pointing to Democratic senators trying to keep their seats and control of the chamber, Wasserman Schultz noted 8 million Americans have signed up for the health-care program though she admitted it does have its flaws.

"This is a law that's working for millions of people," Wasserman Schultz said. "And as we discover there are problems, we should work together to solve those problems."

Gregory noted that prominent Democrats, including U.S. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., who is up for re-election in November, have called for amending the law. Shaheen also has recently said she would have crafted the law differently.

"That's Legislation 101,” Wasserman Schultz fired back. “I mean, that is how we have handled laws and their evolution throughout American history."

The congresswoman looked to play up both her support of the law and the need to change it. "The president is right, and Jeanne Shaheen is right," Wasserman Schultz insisted.

Wasserman Schultz is not the only Democrat playing up her support of Obama’s health-care law in recent days. Despite having spent most of his political life as a Republican, former Gov. Charlie Crist is the favorite to win the Democratic nomination to challenge Gov. Rick Scott in November. Crist is playing up his support of Obama’s health-care law even as former Florida Senate Democratic Leader Nan Rich continues to attack him for his previous conservative positions and demands a debate.

“President Barack Obama announced that 8 million Americans have signed up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act,” Crist informed supporters at the end of last week. “That's great news!

“But we can do more,” Crist continued. “1.1 million working Floridians are left waiting because Rick Scott refuses to expand coverage. I want to fix that.”

Scott’s team has no problem trying to tie Crist to Obama’s health-care law. At the end of last week, Matt Moon, a spokesman for the Scott team, looked to lash Crist to the law, noting that the White House had been planning to cut Medicare Advantage to pay for it.

“How much will cuts to Medicare Advantage – all to pay for Obamacare – hurt Florida seniors?" Moon asked in an email to the media sent out last week. “According to a new report from the American Action Forum, Floridians enrolled in Medicare Advantage face an annual cut of $1,475.78 compared to pre-Obamacare levels.

“Let's put that into context,” Moon continued. “As of January of this year, the average monthly grocery bill of an American 71 years old or above (assuming a low-cost food plan) is at least $200. That means the cut in Medicare Advantage benefits Florida seniors face equates to seven months' worth of groceries.”

A new poll shows the health-care law remains unpopular, though according to Rasmussen Reports the law is more popular than it has been since October. The poll of likely voters finds 45 percent of those surveyed see the law at least somewhat favorably while 51 percent see it as unfavorable. Only 21 percent see the law as very favorable while 38 percent see it as very unfavorable. The poll of 1,000 likely voters across the nation was taken from April 19-20 and had a margin of error of +/- 3 percent.

Reach Kevin Derby at kderby@sunshinestatenews.com.

Comments (8)

2:17PM APR 23RD 2014
Here Deb, have another big cup of stupid.
C S.
2:47PM APR 22ND 2014
Obamacare has barely kicked in, just wait till it's fully implemented. Bhahahaha. When everyone gets to experience IT, no one is exempt. And that of course is after the mid-terms.
12:02PM APR 22ND 2014
It turns out that "Train wreck" —a phrase that has been repeated ad nauseaum by the Republican News Organization FOX News— is correct.

Only its been a train wreck for the GOP!

Onward progressives. Dems don't need to mend anything, just take back the house, keep the Senate and move ahead with sensible job creation, infrastructure and livable wages for American working families.
8:31AM APR 22ND 2014
What about the over 7 million who have lost their insurance? Remember if you like your plan/doctor you can keep it?

"Or like MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry suggested yesterday on her low rated TV show. Harris-Perry chastised Democrats for not bragging about ObamaCare for the year's midterm elections, she at one point mocked Americans angry about having their health insurance plans cancelled, which she referred to as "crappy plans," as she lamented that Democrats are not boasting about ObamaCare or declaring, "Yeah, you can't keep your crappy plans. Just deal with that!"
via NewsBusters
P:atricia Lavins
12:52PM APR 22ND 2014
Apparently people are not aware that the reason that people may not be able to keep their doctor is because of actions by the doctors and insurance agents themselves.

President Obama is not responsible for the fact that health care plans have not been able to meet the needs of the citizens.
9:10AM APR 22ND 2014
Yes, yes, you must be right . . . . and your data's just as correct as the Governor's rampant claim that 300,000 have lost coverage in Florida for the same reason . . . . . . . . too bad that's been shown (like your number) as just more politics of the "Big Lie" . . . where even Florida Blue RECENTLY came out and indicated that didn't happen, not even close . . . . . attempted GOP fantasies . . . . just . . .

Pathetic . . . .
6:32AM APR 22ND 2014
Obamacare is a farce and has been from the beginning. Those who support it must have more money than most because it is costing more and too many loopholes that we don't even know. Our country already had too many problems that need taken care of but with the current man in charge we know the answer. More lies is all we get.
P:atricia Lavins
12:56PM APR 22ND 2014
There is ZERO evidence that President Obama has lied. There is also ZERO evidence that people are unhappy with the Affordable Care Act. It is already proven to be beneficial in allowing adult students to remain on their parents' health care plans. It has already been helpful to senior citizens by the elimination of the donut hole under Medicare.
If has already proven to be able to give health care access to those dependent on Medicaid who also happen to have the good fortune of having a Democrat in the Governor's mansion.

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