Obamacare Hits 6 Million Enrollees; GOP Senator Alleges Fraud
While the White House is gleefully celebrating the news that Obamacare now has six million enrollees, one prominent GOP Senator seems to be in denial. According to John Barrasso, the fourth most powerful Republican in the Senate, reports of six million enrollees are meaningless, because the Obama administration must be lying about it. Barrasso’s assertion that the administration has committed massive and widespread fraud was seemingly based solely on his own personal hunch, as he presented no evidence to back up the claim.
“I don’t think it means anything,” Barrasso said on Fox News Sunday. “I think they’re cooking the books on this.”
As of last week, six million people had signed up for health care on the Affordable Care Act’s federal exchange. Because this was the White House’s target enrollment*by the end of March, it was an important symbolic victory for the law, and the administration celebrated the news with what was essentially a massive troll: White House spokesman Jesse Lee went ahead and retweeted a bunch of Republicans who, months ago, had mocked Obamacare’s sluggish early enrollment.
The Kübler-Ross model dictates that denial is the first of five stages of grief; if that’s the case, Barrasso has a long way to go before accepting the fact that Obamcare is a highly-popular program on its way to becoming a permanent fixture of American society and politics.
It’s also worth noting that the six million number doesn’t include people who signed for insurance via the state exchanges, or those who were newly-eligible for subsidies thanks to the Medicaid expansion. Taking those enrollees into account, Obamacare has enrolled somewhere between 13 and 16 million people.
*The White House’s original target was seven million, but it revised that down to six after the botched rollout of HealthCare.gov.