The implementation of the Affordable Care Act has sent Democratic members of Congress and their staffs into a virtual panic. The political implications for their party, some anonymous Democratic aides are telling the press, are potentially disastrous for their bosses and the Party itself.
According to a report in The Hill, Democratic congressional staffers are venting their frustrations with the ACA’s implementation at President Barack Obama.
“Sources who attended a meeting of House chiefs of staff on Monday say the room was seething with anger over the immense damage being done to the Democratic Party and talk was of scrapping rollout events for the Affordable Care Act,” The Hill report read.
“Here we are, we’re supposed to be selling this to people, and it’s all screwed up,” one Democratic congressional chief of staff told The Hill reporter Amie Parnes. “This either gets fixed or this could be the demise of the Democratic Party.”
“Is he even more unpopular than George W. Bush? I think that’s already happened,” another Democratic chief of staff told Parnes.
The staffers are eager for a legislative fix to the law which would mitigate the damage presently being done to the electoral prospects of Democratic congressional representatives. They say that the White House effectively made things worse when he refused to embrace some Democratic proposals for bills that would assuage public concerns.
“People here want to be on the record showing support for fixing the problem,” the senior Senate aide said. “He should understand that. For someone who served in Congress, people are surprised how little he understands Congress.”
Another anonymous staffer said that vulnerable Democratic members will have little use for the president on the campaign trail in 2014. One suggested that Obama can help raise money for candidates and congressional committees, “but that’s the extent of it.”
[Photo via AP]
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