By Bill Albee and Van Newstrom
Trump is saying that the term “Obamacare” is virtually obsolete. I agree. He thinks that by sabotaging the Affordable Care Act (ACA) the Democrats will be held responsible for the loss of health care insurance by millions of US citizens and premium increases for millions more. The failure of Trump and the Republicans to repeal and replace the ACA with affordable, more comprehensive health care insurance can cost Republicans both the House and the Senate in 2018.
To make this the deciding issue in the 2018 and 2020 elections, Democrats must make every effort to retire the term “Obamacare” and refer to the ACA exclusively as “Trumpcare.” Democrats need to capitalize on what Trump said and make the term “Obamacare” totally obsolete. The challenge is to convince voters that the ACA is now Trumpcare by consistently repeating that Trump’s executive orders and cuts to premium subsidies for the poor have rendered Obamacare as we knew it unrecognizable).
Trump signs the E. O. that changes the ACA to Trumpcare
Republican messaging regarding the ACA has always contained misrepresentations and outright lies that the electorate has difficulty validating. Consequently, a majority of voters were convinced the ACA was a step backward and a financial disaster for government and the people. Recent efforts by the Republicans to repeal and replace have failed and the result is a majority now strongly favoring the ACA over the proposed replacement systems.
To capitalize on the healthcare mess created by Donald Trump and the Republican legislative branch all Democrats should immediately adopt the term “Trumpcare” when referring to our current healthcare system; and repeat the term so often that Trumpcare becomes a dirty word. Whenever asked about Obamacare by reporters, Democrats need to respond by reminding the reporters and their audiences that because of Trump’s Executive Orders we no longer have Obamacare and we can now only factually refer to the ACA as Trumpcare.
I implore Democrats to take a page from the Republicans playbook and make Trump and the Republicans own healthcare. If they can make the term Trumpcare a replacement for the term Obamacare, the voters will eventually associate all real or perceived problems with the ACA only with Trump and the Republicans. Healthcare will surely be one of the top issues in the 2018 and 2020 elections. To make this a winning strategy, Democrats must not only convince the electorate that Trump broke the ACA and that now he and the Republicans own it, but they must also offer strategies to fix the ACA.