Let's All Sign Up For Obamacare And Go Naked!
Might even get Dr. Spaceman as your primary care physician...
In news that should hardly come as a surprise, the day after the election was the biggest day of sign-ups for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, which is, yes, still a going concern, although killing it (and consequently, unknown numbers of people who'll be without health coverage, even with Emergency Rooms) remains Job One for both Donald Trump and congressional Republicans.
Politico reports over 100,000 people signed up up for plans on the exchanges on November 9, the highest of any day since open enrollment began on November 1. What's that thing the Republicans say they like so much? The wisdom of the marketplace? Voting with your pocketbook? Oh, yeah, now we remember: LAZY TAKERS, although of course the plans on the ACA are through private, for-profit insurers, and even folks with subsidized plans are generally working people who are paying a healthy chunk of their premiums. You know, WELFARE SCUM WHO ARE TOO LAZY TO WORK.
Secretary of Health and Human Services Sylvia Burwell was happy to call attention to the news:
Politico did note that there's not an absolutely clear causal relationship between the election and the high level of signups Wednesday, since HHS had held off on marketing open enrollment until November 9 anyway, since most people would be paying attention to the elections. But hell, let's take this and build on it. As we mentioned in an update to our earlier story on the Rs' plan to flush Obamacare, we heard from an ACA navigator whose agency and other organizations in Illinois are urging people to sign up at healthcare.gov by December 15 in order to get coverage that starts January 1. Couple of reasons for doing this:
1) Insurance companies like plans to begin and end with the calendar year. There's a decent chance that even if the ACA is murdered by Republicans, the 2017 plan year will remain in place.
2) A big jump in Marketplace enrollments might get lawmakers' attention, sending a clear message that eliminating the ACA will create a lot of angry voters. Maybe not enough to preserve the ACA as we know it (or pass the fixes it needs to work better), but possibly enough to get on Congress's radar and give members a reason to preserve at least some parts of the current system instead of going back to the horrible patchwork we had previously. Yes, settling for scraps sucks. But if Congress can be persuaded to preserve Medicaid expansion (we're dreaming), it would be better than million of people losing coverage.
2a) Not mentioned by our correspondent the ACA navigator, but a huge number of people signing up for Obamacare right after the election is a nice loud "FUCK YOU" to the idea that the American People hate the ACA.
So let's cook up some activism. Let's all get insured and go nay-ked, and lie in a big ol' pile:
Clarification: The Obamacare sign-up is the important part there. The naked is just for fun.