Magazine March 22, 2021, Issue

How Democrats Won on Obamacare

Mitt Romney during his 2012 presidential campaign (Sean Gardner/Reuters)
The Ten Year War: Obamacare and the Unfinished Crusade for Universal Coverage, by Jonathan Cohn (St. Martin’s Press, 416 pp., $29.99)

The Ten Year War, liberal journalist Jonathan Cohn’s account of the fight over Obamacare, does not exactly make for gripping reading — even for those of us who take a keen interest in the ever-divisive health-care law.

It’s not about the policy of Obamacare and its pros and cons, at least not predominantly. Instead, it focuses on the processes through which Obamacare became and remained the law, drawing on Cohn’s years of reporting on the debate and interviewing the major players. Readers learn all about the high-level discussions, the meetings hashing out the nitty-gritty details, the deals with interest groups, the

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