President signs the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

The Affordable Care Act was not popular when it was first approved and it has become even less popular as we approach the implementation date. According to a new NBC/WSJ poll, 49 percent of Americans call the President Obama’s signature law a bad idea. This is the highest level of disapproval ever found in the poll. By comparison, only 37 percent believe the law was a good idea.

This should be a concern for Democrats given that they are going to be forced to own Obamacare in the 2014 election.

The potential good news for Democrats is that once the law is actually implemented at the beginning of next year, there is real chance that event will finally cause a shift in popular opinion about the law. Of course, Democrats are going to face the serious problem that in large parts of the country implementation is going to go poorly because Democrats foolishly gave the opponents of the law the job of making sure it is a success.

Instead of being able to point to a functioning national program, Democrats are going to need to use a few examples, like California, to make the case the law would have been much better if not for Republicans.

It should never be forgotten that the design of the ACA was one of the most profoundly stupid political moves in modern times. If you are tying your political future to the success of a law, never give your opposition the responsibility of implementing it.

Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy