Conservatives have a new, airtight case against Obamacare, the health care law that 66% of Americans want to see work: late night comics are making jokes about it. At a press conference Wednesday morning, Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) used her turn at the microphone to recite a joke by Conan O’Brien, then cite other sources of jokes, before explaining that “nothing is funny about losing your health care plan,” unless you got it from Healthcare.gov. Then, it’s apparently fine.
Rep. Jenkins stepped to the microphone after several other Republican House members tried out their new “Obamacare is the glitch™” talking point, and launched right into a bit from Conan O’Brien’s TBS show. Any comic will tell you that nothing improves material quite like having it recited on C-Span by a member of the House of Representatives (Senators have no delivery), and Jenkins did not disappoint.
“Conan said, the other night,” Jenkins began, “Obama is now urging Americans having trouble with the website to call 1-800. A 1-800 number. The number is 1-800-we don’t think. We didn’t think this through.”
Jenkins added that “Whether it’s Fallon, or Conan or Jon Stewart, Saturday Night Live, all the jokes keep going on and on and on, but nothing is funny about losing your health care plan when you already had what you liked and you wanted to keep it. Nothing’s funny about being forced on a website that doesn’t work, to buy health insurance that you don’t want and can’t afford. And it’s even less funny when a government tax is hanging over your head and you don’t have hours on end to go through the whole circus. This Obamacare exchange has been a complete and total failure and it’s unacceptable. The American people deserve better.”
The problems with the website have been monumental, to be sure, but they have also exposed a tremendous demand, and an overwhelming public desire to see the law enacted. If Republicans think they can convince people to abandon the law, and throw people like the fainting lady back on the mercy of insurance companies, they’re going to need more than a couple of late-night wisecracks to do it.
Here’s the video, via C-Span, followed by Conan’s actual monologue:
Here’s Conan’s actual monologue, via TBS:
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