David Spady

Montana Senator Max Baucus, who led the effort in Congress to pass Obamacare, is now referring to it as a “coming train wreck”. Baucus has announced he will not to seek re-election in 2014, perhaps to avoid the inevitable embarrassment of this pending disaster. He’s not alone in his concern. The prospect that too few Americans will enroll in the program, thus rendering it unfeasible, has the administration fearful that Baucus is right -- it may actually end up derailed. These enrollment fears have prompted the creation of dubious non-profit organizations to promote Obamacare. Enroll America and Organizing for Action are tax-exempt organizations, led by former Obama campaign operatives, which plan to spend tens of millions of dollars pitching Obamacare enrollment. Their funding primarily comes from special interests and healthcare related corporations who stand to profit from Obamacare.

Success or failure of Obamacare depends on the administration’s ability to sign up a large portion of the 50 million Americans currently without health insurance. One group that is particularly vital to Obamacare’s success are young adults, ages 18 to 35, who will pay more into the system than what they will take out in healthcare benefits. Private health insurance companies have long-attempted to enroll young, healthy Americans to offset the costs of care for the elderly -- but it’s proven to be a near impossible task. Many young people simply choose to avoid the burden of monthly expenses for healthcare policies they don’t believe are necessary. If this demographic was a tough sell for private insurance companies before Obamacare, it will be even more difficult now. A survey of insurers, conducted by the American Action Forum, reveals that a health insurance policy for a 27-year-old male nonsmoker will be 190 percent higher under Obamacare.

Obamacare is now relying on a simple math equation. By 2016, the Administration will need 22 million uninsured Americans signed up with new state-based insurance exchanges or the federal government’s program. Enrollment begins on October 1, with a goal of at least 7 million people onboard over the next year. Included in this goal are 2.7 million young adults who aren’t exactly enthusiastic about signing up. Needless to say, it will require a massive public relations and education campaign to get these young people signed up. Congress hasn’t provided Obama with the funding to make this happen but that’s not stopping the Administration from finding other methods to achieve its goals.

David Spady

David Spady is President of Media and Public Affairs Strategy based in Camarillo, California.