Dems: Not Giving GOP a 'Rhetorical Weapon' Beats Dealing With Serious Medicaid Enrollment Problems

June 5th, 2014 12:35 AM

In the midst of the VA scandal and the Bergdahl saga, two unfavorable Wednesday stories about Obamacare are garnering relatively little attention.

One appeared at the Associated Press ("NOW APPLICATION 'INCONSISTENCIES' VEX HEALTH LAW"), and reprised something the Washington Post brought out 2-1/2 weeks ago (covered here at NewsBusters) about how "at least 2 million" Obamacare enrollment applications have "data discrepancies" holding up their full processing. The other far more troubling story appeared at Roll Call. It dealt with a separate mountain of unprocessed paperwork in Medicaid. In her reporting, the DC publication's Rebecca Adams revealed how twisted and potentially dangerous the Obamacare-related political motivations are on the left, where pretending that everything is fine is clearly more important than acknowledging and quickly fixing serious – perhaps even deadly serious — problems (bolds are mine):

The Hidden Failure of Obama's Health Care Overhaul


At least 2.9 million Americans who signed up for Medicaid coverage as part of the health care overhaul have not had their applications processed, with some paperwork sitting in queues since last fall, according to a 50-state survey by CQ Roll Call.

Those delays — due to technological snags with enrollment websites, bureaucratic tangles at state Medicaid programs and a surge of applicants — betray Barack Obama’s promise to expand access to health care for some of the nation’s most vulnerable citizens.

As a result, some low-income people are being prevented from accessing benefits they are legally entitled to receive. Those who face delays may instead put off doctors appointments and lose access to their medicines, complicating their medical conditions and increasing the eventual cost to U.S. taxpayers.

Democratic lawmakers who have promoted the law’s historic coverage expansion are wary of acknowledging problems that hand opponents of the Affordable Care Act another rhetorical weapon, said Robert Blendon, a professor at Harvard University School of Public Health and Kennedy School of Government.

Well, there you have it.

Millions of poor people are not able to access promised benefits. Many of them are putting off or avoiding needed trips to the doctor. They're not able to get necessary medications. Hey, I thought Obamacare and Medicaid expansion were going to solve these problems?

But if you're on the left, don't you dare utter a word about any of this, because it's far more important that the public not know and that Republicans and conservatives not be given another "rhetorical weapon" than it is to put pressure on the people who have allowed these dangerous messes to continue to fester to fix them.

Somehow, Ms. Adams, perhaps in search of some weird form of balance, then decided to find support for the obscene contention that if you are a conservative or Republican who finds out about these problems and criticizes them, you're obviously a flaming hypocrite:

Meanwhile, Republicans usually eager to criticize the Obama administration or states for implementation problems risk looking hypocritical by showcasing the Medicaid waits. Many oppose expanding the program to people with incomes as high as 138 percent of the federal poverty line, as the law allows states to do, and are loath to demand more efficient enrollment to achieve that goal.

“It’s a total contradiction in terms to spend your public time castigating Medicaid as something that never should have been expanded for poor people and as a broken, problem-riddled system, and then turn around and complain about the length of time to enroll people,” said Sara Rosenbaum, a member of the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission, which advises Congress.

What rubbish, Ms. Rosenbaum.

It's not at all hypocritical to point out to big-government believers that they claimed to be able to run an enrollment system efficiently, that people they promised would get coverage aren't getting it, and that their health may deteriorate even conceivably to the point of death as a result.

To quote Instapundit's Glenn Reynolds, the left and the Obama administration are apparently more comfortable with "Potemkin villages all the way down" than they are with actually meeting the needs of the constituents they promised to serve. How despicable.

And it's Republicans and conservatives who have no compassion? Spare me.

Cross-posted at