What's the electoral impact of the Supreme Court upholding the Affordable Care Act?

I think it looks like a surprise win for the President- and will help in a little. The American people historically like success.

I think it will energize both sides.

The anti-Obamacare people will use this as fodder to get people to vote for the “right” candidate next time. I’m sure it will get the Tea Partiers (even more) riled up, since they get petulant over any perceived slight.

Meanwhile, this will help the pro-Obama side feel like finally, they were able to accomplish something despite all the obstructionists out there… and that will lead to more donations and support. I know I feel like a weight is off my shoulders.

Net effect should be minimal. Those who were against it will be more energized, though most of them would crawl on broken glass in the nude to vote against Obama anyway. Supporters can breathe a sigh of relief and not view the first term as a waste.

Agreed, but this will help Obama more than Romney, for the reason you stated in the third sentence.

As I mentioned elsewhere, I read one analyst who said that the health care decision’s already been factored into polls long ago. I can generally see that, although I do admit that some Republicans’ enthusiasm will be inflamed for “get out the vote” efforts. How significant that is is a matter of debate. (One commenter on some conservative blog - forget which one (the Corner?) - I read claimed to be discouraged by the ruling, blaming Bush for nominating Roberts and leading to Obama’s election, and feeling that Romney was just another Bush.)

All in all, it seems the two ways it could have an impact are on voter enthusiasm and persuading swing voters. The former could be significant, or not (since, just as Republicans will be encouraged, so will Democrats). Who knows how the latter will go (will they not like the “new tax,” or will they go with “everyone likes a winner”?).

The decision as it stands is more favorable to Obama. It would have been a club to swing in an uncountable infinity of attack ads. Removing that weapon has to be generating gales of relief all over the Democratic leadership.

That’s the irony of this decision. The question on everybody’s mind was whether it was legal to punish people for not doing something, taking a negative act and turning it into a positive for overall health care. The decision also takes a possible future negative and turns it into a positive by making it not exist.

We’ve had silly seasons in campaigns before. This is the first one that’s ever had a season of existential crisis. We’re off the charts.

And that means going forward there’s only an effect if somebody clever on the Republican side can spin this so that it turns back into a negative. That’s always a possibility. Nobody thought Kerry could be attacked on his Vietnam record until somebody figured out how to do it. This is an even more difficult exercise since any attack has to be parsed perfectly to avoid making an attack on Romney for his Massachusetts bill, but I would dare anyone to say it’s impossible.

According to Rush, Beck and Ingraham (who were flopping around like landed fish over my lunch break (Hannity doesn’t come on until later)) this a big boon to the Republicans because now they have the American people behind them, who, to a man, hate “Obamacare” and it has hamstrung the “Democrat party” because now they have to defend it.

Color me unsurprised that this was their analysis.

So they were rooting for it to pass the whole time so they could take the White House and dismantle it, right? :smiley:

In fact, most of the public dissatisfaction with Obama’s health-care reform package exists because it didn’t go far enough.

But the Obama team can’t very well make any use of that fact as a campaign-message, can they? :frowning:

In a parallel universe where they had the cojones to properly call out the Republicans as unprincipled obstructionists, yes.

In the actual real universe, no.

They can remind people that voting for Obama is not enough. Let’s throw more Republicans out of Congress!

I think if Obama wants to turn this into something to benefit him, he needs to get out the communication effort on it. The recent poll where when presented with the facts of what it is gets people excited, but once you call it “ObamaCare” they don’t like it. The Dems have not done a good job of telling people what is in it, based on that poll. If they want to take advantage of this ruling, they really need to get off their asses and communicate it better to the general public.

I get that they think that they have done so, but that recent poll shows that there is a lot of work to do.

Sounds like the “We got 'em right where we want 'em” strategery.

I think it is going to be interesting to see how Obama paints Romney: is he a right-wing threat to the country? Or a moderate flip-flopper that should drive the Tea Party types crazy?

I’m not sure how much mileage this gets, but saying that Romney is so far out of touch that he’s to the right of John Roberts is a tantalizing, but probably too esoteric, line of attack.

I’m an Obama supporter and ecstatic that this law has been upheld. But BBC keeps reporting that “most Americans” are against the law. How true is that? It does worry me how much this could energize the Republicans. I hope my worries turn out to be unfounded, but how true is the BBC’s claim of most people being opposed to it. And they’re not couching it in terms of being opposed to it because it does not go far enough, the Beeb’s saying flat out that Americans simply don’t like it.

I think almost all Americans are dissatisfied with it. We can argue and polls can be skewed until the cows come home but I’d wager a majority of the dissatisfaction is that it didn’t go far enough. YMMV

I see it as a clean win for Obama, with the added bonus of giving him ammo to use against Romney. Romney was quoted as saying something like if the Health Care law was overturned, it meant that Obama’s term was wasted. Since the opposite happened, there is a certain logical implication that the term accomplished something.

Note that I’m not pleased at this, as I want Obama to lose…but I think this decision gives his campaign a decent boost.


If I were in charge of the Obama camp right now, I would begin kicking the ACA promotional campaign into fucking overdrive. That’s the best way to capitalize on the SCOTUS ruling, really; paint the Republicans as the obstructionist crybabies that they are while simultaneously rolling out a MASSIVE ad campaign that touts the benefits of their newly-declared constitutional law. The biggest mistakes that the Dems made throughout the entire HC reform debate were (1) making the ACA not take effect immediately but instead four years after its passage, and (2) being defensive about the bill and not championing its benefits. It’s time for them to go on the fucking offense.

Hell, Rush was secretly rooting for the mandate to be upheld! Instant ratings bonanza! If the GOP actually were to get their way, all his listeners would have no reason to tune in.

Absolutely. It may not be a great bill, but it’s definitely better than nothing. The Democrats could hardly have played the hand worse until now. First there were endless concessions to the Republicans who had no intention of giving them a single vote no matter what. Then they made the mistake of thinking that moronic attacks like “death panels” were too silly to require a response. Now for the last two years virtually 100% of the coverage has been negative thanks to right wing talk radio and a phony cable news network. Time for the Democratic Super PACs to step to the plate and put out a series of ads that explain what the bill does and doesn’t do. Time for Obama to do a national address to explain what’s coming as the provisions take effect. Time for the responsible media to call out the Republican shills among them for promoting lies as news.