The electorate isn’t buying the “Trump broke it” propaganda.
For a year, the Democrats and the legacy media have waged a relentless propaganda campaign calculated to convince the public that Obamacare’s myriad failures — from skyrocketing premiums to stagnant enrollment — are the result of sabotage by President Trump and congressional Republicans. This headline from the Hill is typical: “Many states blame Trump, GOP for Obamacare premium increases.” It seems, however, that “the stupidity of the American voter” has been greatly exaggerated. A new survey shows that more than two-thirds of registered voters believe former President Obama and the Democrats are responsible for the dilapidated condition of the “Affordable Care Act.”
The delicious irony here is that this poll wasn’t the work of some conservative think tank. It was conducted by Morning Consult at the behest of Politico, well known for shamelessly pimping Obamacare. It will come as no surprise that the paragons of journalistic integrity who edit that publication were reluctant to highlight such inconvenient voter attitudes in a feature article. It was thus buried in paragraph 28 of a soporific blog post, well below blockbuster news items like President Trump’s recent lunch with Senator Shelley Moore Capito. Even the link provided for readers who made it that far goes to the abridged “toplines” version that omits much of the damning data found in the complete survey.
And the information contained in the 246-page survey is damning indeed. The bad news begins on page 62, which reveals that the voters who regard the state of the Affordable Care Act as “excellent” or “good” constitute a mere 36 percent of the total. Then, on page 74, we discover who the voters really blame for the ramshackle state of Obamacare — fully 67 percent of registered voters hold former President Obama responsible. Moreover, it isn’t only Republicans who blame Obama for the mess. No fewer than 61 percent of Democrats believe the former president made a hash of it, as do an equal percentage of Independents. And President Trump? Only 20 percent of the voters hold him responsible.
Meanwhile, the survey shows that registered voters have been equally unimpressed by the effort to blame Obamacare’s failures on congressional Republicans. A favorite Democrat-MSM theme has been that the “uncertainty” caused by GOP efforts to repeal the health care law has driven insurers out of Obamacare’s exchanges and forced the few remaining players to raise premiums. But this nonsense doesn’t seem to have fooled the poll’s respondents. In answer to the question concerning which political party is responsible for the current state of Obamacare, 68 percent of the voters pinned the tail on the donkey. And, as for the wicked Republicans, only 32 percent held them responsible for the train wreck.
All of which raises the following question: Why has such a consistent and well coordinated propaganda campaign failed so miserably? Well, as it happens, Morning Consult conducted another poll a couple of weeks ago that offers some useful information on that very point. That survey of registered voters included the following question: “Based on what you know, do you believe the nation’s major news organizations fabricate news stories about President Trump and his administration, or not?” A whopping 46 percent responded in the affirmative. In other words, nearly half of the electorate believes the legacy media is not merely biased, but deliberately publish fictitious stories about the President.
Thus, because the Democrats rely so heavily on the legacy media to promulgate the party line, the message of the day tends to fall on deaf ears. This is particularly true when the “news” stories are implausible. Take the headline quoted in the first paragraph above. The Hill uncritically repeated an accusation by an Obamacare advocacy group without asking an obvious question that would have added some much needed balance to the story: “If Trump and the GOP caused the 2018 rate hikes, what precipitated all the other premium spikes that have bedeviled enrollees since Obamacare was enacted?” An honest reporter might also have underscored this point by including a link to this analysis from HHS.
Most members of the establishment media have responded to the discovery that nearly half of the electorate distrusts them by blaming the customer. As the following headline from Salon puts it, “The Big Lie pays off: Trump voters believe fake news about the news being fake.” In other words, the President has used unflattering public comments and less flattering tweets to convince the slow-witted voters that professional journalism has long since been colonized by left-leaning political activists. It certainly couldn’t be that the voters actually have enough sense to remember Dan Rather’s clumsily forged memos, the JournoList scandal, media collusion with the Democratic National Committee, ad infinitum.
But most of the voters know exactly what’s going on. For them, Obamacare isn’t an abstract issue like the national debt or the balance of trade with China. The voters know their insurance premiums and out-of-pocket health care expenses began skyrocketing the moment Obamacare was enacted. They also remember who shoved it down their throats. No amount of propaganda will make them believe President Trump or the GOP created this mess. In fact, their primary complaint about the Republicans is that they haven’t repealed Obamacare yet. The Democrats and their media co-conspirators should be grateful that only two-thirds of the voters blame them for the risibly titled “Affordable Care Act.”