The Great Debate

America: The anecdotal nation

By Neal Gabler
April 14, 2014

In America today, anecdotes have become the new facts.

Consider Obamacare. Opponents have produced ads featuring apparently ordinary Americans telling stories about the travails forced upon them by the Affordable Care Act. One ad, financed by the Koch brothers, highlighted a leukemia sufferer named Julie Boonstra, who claimed that Obamacare had raised the cost of her medications so much that she was faced with death! Pretty dramatic stuff — except that numerous fact-checkers found she would actually save $1,200 under Obamacare.

Why corporations don’t deserve religious freedom

By Jay Michaelson
March 24, 2014

On March 25 the Supreme Court will hear arguments in two cases, Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores and Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp. v. Sebelius, whose outcomes will decide whether corporations can exempt themselves from provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), based on religious beliefs. The cases challenge a provision of the ACA that requires employer-provided insurance plans to include contraception coverage.

2014: Another election about Obamacare

By Bill Schneider
December 23, 2013

Here we go again.

2014 will be the third election in a row in which Obamacare is the central issue. The Affordable Care Act, which President Barack Obama signed into law in March 2010, contributed to a fierce voter backlash against Democrats in November 2010. After the Supreme Court upheld the law in June 2012, the issue seemed to be settled by Obama’s re-election that November.

Can states’ rights work for liberals?

By Bill Schneider
December 3, 2013

Can states’ rights work for liberals? It has always been a conservative cause. Conservatives use states’ rights to resist federal policies that protect civil rights, voting rights and abortion rights. Today, however, federal action is often blocked. So progressive states are passing laws that bypass gridlocked Washington and advance the liberal agenda on their own.

GOP on Obamacare: Divide and conquer

By Bill Schneider
November 19, 2013

“Remember the strategy for stopping Obamacare we laid out to you back in July,” Speaker John Boehner (R-Oh.) told the House Republican conference last week. “Targeted legislative strikes aimed at shattering the legislative coalition the president has used to force his law on the nation.”

What about Social Security’s rollout?

By Bruce J. Schulman
October 29, 2013

After the nation’s major social program finally became law, critics regularly blamed it for a slowing economy and a swelling federal bureaucracy. Fierce congressional opposition led to the formation of a blue-ribbon panel to overhaul the measure. Obamacare in 2013? Not quite. It was Social Security in 1937.

Opposing Obamacare: GOP’s defining issue

By Bill Schneider
October 28, 2013

After the French Revolution, the statesman and diplomat Talleyrand said of the Bourbon kings, “They learned nothing and they forgot nothing.” The same might be said of congressional Republicans after their disastrous government shutdown adventure.

After healthcare mess, do you want D.C. doing your taxes?

By Grover G. Norquist and Patrick Gleason
October 24, 2013

The launch of the Obamacare online exchanges this month has been a disaster for the White House.

Ted Cruz: Blackmailer

By Bill Schneider
September 27, 2013

On October 28, Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) and his supporters may wish to commemorate the feast day of Saint Jude. Jude is the patron saint of hopeless causes. Because if ever there was a hopeless cause, it is killing the Affordable Care Act.

Healthcare reform to end “job lock” for the over-50 crowd

By Mark Miller
July 3, 2013

When Carmen Oberai was diagnosed with breast cancer several years ago, she knew the treatment would make it tough for her to stay at her job. But she needed the health insurance provided by her employer, so she worked through the illness.