No Rally on Obamacare

by April Ponnuru

Despite the president’s best effort to shame Congress for its continued opposition to his deeply unpopular health-care law, he was unable to make more than a feeble defense of his signature accomplishment.

Americans watching the State of the Union address last night could be forgiven for thinking that the whole point of Obamacare was merely to help those (relatively few) Americans who have trouble getting insurance because of their preexisting conditions from facing medical bankruptcy. But Americans aren’t buying it. They don’t think it makes sense to cancel the health policies of millions of people to help this small fraction of the public. They don’t believe that you have to restrict people’s choices about what kind of insurance they can buy to protect sick people from bankruptcy.

In fact, those reasonable concerns point to conservative answers emphasizing high-risk pools and increasing access to catastrophic health plans. They don’t point to an upending of the whole health system as directed by Washington. And that’s why we shouldn’t expect the numbers on Obamacare to turn in the president’s favor anytime soon.

— April Ponnuru is the policy director for YG Network.

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