What the Act does is in effect to increase the burden on fortunate people — the healthy and wealthy — to lift some burdens on the less fortunate: people with chronic illnesses or other preexisting conditions, low-income workers…Obamacare opponents could, of course, go with the real losers — people in the one percent paying higher taxes, healthy young men who are getting by with cheap, minimalist policies. But they want sob stories — the sick middle-aged woman facing tragedy. And so far, every single one of those sob stories has turned out to be false — because the very nature of the reform is such that such things hardly ever happen.
* A just-released New York Times/CBS poll finds Obama’s approval is down and Republicans hold the generic ballot edge for 2014, but Dems appear to hold an advantage on multiple issues. Some key findings:
Republican legislators are also in the minority of public opinion on matters related to the economy. Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe that the distribution of wealth should be more equitable, and most, regardless of party affiliation, think that any plan to reduce the federal budget deficit should include both tax increases and spending cuts.
Two-thirds of the public favors raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour from $7.25, an issue Democrats are seizing on in races across the country. As for the Affordable Care Act — opposition to which forms the centerpiece of many Republican campaigns this year — half of Americans think that there are some good things in the law, but that some changes are needed to make it work better, while 42 percent say it needs to be repealed.
As always, repeal remains a minority position.
* Good stuff from Karen Tumulty, who reports that even some Republicans are questioning whether the party’s single-minded focus on Obamacare will be enough in 2014. Here’s Bobby Jindal:
“If we want to earn the majority, we have to be offering detailed policy solutions, detailed ideas of what we would do differently. I don’t think it is enough to say just repeal Obamacare.”
Do tell! Okay, but as we’re already seeing, even 2014 GOP candidates who know repeal alone is a loser are having trouble embracing an alternative.
* Meanwhile, Thom Tillis, the likely GOP candidate against Senator Kay Hagan, came out against the minimum wage today, calling it a “dangerous idea,” and even suggested we should consider not having a minimum wage at all. The issue will be key to Dem efforts to make red state races about the parties’ economic agendas.
* Dems are circulating video of Tillis’ minimum wage moment. This will leave a mark.
* Brian Beutler captures the totality of the latest GOP attacks on Obamacare’s cuts to Medicare in all their cynical glory.
* Luke Johnson reports that the Senate GOP push for an Iran sanctions vote has now earned the ire of veterans groups who are unhappy with GOP procedural tricks to force that vote, another sign of just how partisan Republicans have made the Iran debate.
* ABC News has the latest on the enormous pressure that is being brought to bear on Governor Jan Brewer to veto the Arizona anti-gay bill. As someone joked on twitter, she is perhaps the only person left in the country who hasn’t figured out her position on this.
* The twitters are claiming Brewer is set to make a statement at 7:45 pm; it seems a veto is all but certain.
* Mark Berman has a fun, or perhaps dispiriting, overview of other similar Arizona controversies.
* And Dylan Scott reports that Georgia business figures are coming out against another anti-gay measure in that state, as happened in Arizona — yet another sign that pragmatic GOP-aligned business interests are at odds with some in the party over its refusal to evolve on social issues.