President Obama and the First Lady have planned an Oval Office event Wednesday promoting signing up for Obamacare explicitly targeting mothers in an attempt to have them convince their adult children to buy insurance through HealthCare.gov.
According to The Hill, the event will take place in the Oval Office and highlight the “critical role moms are playing in helping their family access quality, affordable health care,” according to one White House official. That role, they explain, is to tell their children to sign up through methods implemented by the Affordable Care Act. The event will also serve to remind moms of certain important facts about their children’s coverage, particularly that it extends until they are 26 now. The Hill describes the event as a “rare joint” one for the family on such an occasion.
The event targeting mothers comes at a key time for family reunions, as adult children return home from college or working away from their hometowns for the holidays. It is not a move completely without precedent, however, as last month President Obama’s team was widely panned for encouraging people to bring up Obamacare at their Thanksgiving tables, inviting political conflict with family during what for many is an annual reunion.
Perhaps the Obama administration learned its lesson in encouraging political talk during the holidays, instead opting for a more low-key way of inviting the discussion by putting mothers on notice of their importance in the success of the law. Or perhaps polling is showing them that Obamacare support is dwindling precipitously among women.
A Kaiser poll released earlier this month revealed shocking levels of disapproval among white women— 63% having at least a “somewhat” if not “very unfavorable” view of the Affordable Care Act. Half of college-educated white women have at least a somewhat unfavorable view, as well. Meanwhile, a Harvard Institute of Politics Poll is showing that these women’s children seem to agree: 57% of Millennials polled had an unfavorable view of Obamacare, and 54% disapproved of the President’s performance at the beginning of December.
What’s more, of all demographics, the uninsured are polling the least favorably for the program. Wednesday’s event will thus target a core nexus of disillusion with the President before the White House calls it a year.
The push to promote the role of mothers in getting people signed up for Obamacare arrives as one of many new initiatives from Democrats to promote the law. Health insurance giants with ties to the Obama administration are spending millions in new advertising for the ACA, and Hollywood is contributing star power like That ’70s Show cast member Wilmer Valderrama to rally young voters around Obamacare.