There was a time when Rahm Emanuel thought it was smarter to move forward with small health care steps, but he was overruled by President Obama and his brother Zeke Emanuel. Now that the Affordable Care Act helped cost Democrats the House in 2010 and is sinking Obama’s favorable ratings, Rahm is having his “I told you so” moment. From USA Today:
“He thought we should have done something more incremental, that doing something comprehensive is not in the nature of the American health care system, and I thought doing something more comprehensive was absolutely essential to actually fixing the health care system,” Zeke Emanuel said in an interview on USA TODAY’s Capital Download. President Obama backed a comprehensive overhaul, but when the roll-out of the healthcare.gov exchanges went badly this fall, Rahm Emanuel wasn’t shy about saying I-told-you-so.
“Ever call me? How about every day,” Zeke Emanuel told the weekly video newsmaker series. He imitated the razzing query posed by his brother, now the mayor of Chicago: “How we doing, Zeke?”
At the time Firedoglake shared a similar position with Rahm, albeit for slightly different reasons. It was always possible to use reconciliation to quickly move forward the best and most popular parts of the ACA (like the Medicaid expansion) without the unpopular provisions such as the individual mandate. Medicaid expansion alone is responsible for half the new coverage and going much smoother than the exchanges in the states that chose to take part.
Instead we got the ACA, which is currently polling at 39 percent approval to 57 percent disapproval — and dragging the Democratic party down with it.