NYT Attempts to Limit Damage to Dems From Obama and Obamacare to rollout of HealthCare.gov


By Tom Blumer

Pro-abortion President Barack Obama

Pro-abortion President Barack Obama

One of the more humorous attempts at furious spin this weekend occurred over at the New York Times. Jonathan Martin and Ashley Parker somehow managed to cover how association with President Barack Obama is becoming “poisonous” to Democratic Party candidates in this fall’s elections without identifying or even acknowledging the existence of the primary reason for his toxicity — namely his repeated guarantees, now all proven false, that “If you like your plan, doctor, medical provider, and prescription drug regimen, you can keep them, period.”

Martin and Parker claim that the Dems’ biggest hurdles are HealthCare.gov’s awful rollout and the administration’s inept marketing of Obamacare (HT Powerline; bolds are mine):

… Interviews with more than two dozen Democratic members of Congress, state party officials and strategists revealed a new urgency about the need to address the party’s prospects. One Democratic lawmaker, who asked not to be identified, said Mr. Obama was becoming “poisonous” to the party’s candidates. At the same time, Democrats are pressing senior aides to Mr. Obama for help from the political network.

… Even though special elections are rarely reliable predictors for future elections, Alex Sink’s loss to David Jolly in Florida’s 13th District last week added to the Democrats’ negative story line. Frightening Democrats further, none of the Republican third-party money in the race came from the Koch brothers, the wealthy industrialists whose political groups have funded the bulk of the TV ads hammering Democrats this election cycle.

“Florida 13 doesn’t keep me up at night, but the aggregate Republican super PAC money makes me toss and turn,” Mr. Israel said.

This unease is also prompting Democrats to speak more candidly about what many see as the root cause for their political difficulties: the bungled unveiling of the health law, in particular the insurance website, and the White House’s failure to market the initiative effectively. 

“The rollout left a bad taste in people’s mouth from Day 1, and it’s hard to create a new flavor now,” said Representative Steve Cohen, Democrat of Tennessee.

… Other Democrats are openly critical of the health care law in their advertisements. In one ad promoting Representative Ann Kirkpatrick, Democrat of Arizona, the narrator says she “blew the whistle on the disastrous health care website, calling it ‘stunning ineptitude,’ and worked to fix it.”

You’ve got to be kidding, Ms. Kirkpatrick. You voted for the Affordable Care Act. It doesn’t matter whether or not you like that vote, because you get to keep that vote and all of its implications, including that you didn’t seem to mind the President, HHS, and your party leaders’ serial false guarantees that Americans could keep their plans, doctors, medical providers and drug regimens under the new law. They can’t — and that has nothing to do with fixing a web site.

So it would appear that the President has been told, “Get us some money, but don’t come around, okay?” Meanwhile, the Times gets in a dig at the Kochs even when they’re totally uninvolved, and whines about how the bad guys have all the money, when the union and single-issue advocacy groups’ wallets are wide open.

As Powerline’s Steven Hayward observed: “Hard to pick out who is deepest in denial here—Democrats, or the NY Times reporting staff.”


Editor’s note. This appeared at newsbusters.org.