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November 18, 2013 11:30 AM Bingo

By Ed Kilgore

It’s to be expected that three Democratic governors where the Affordable Care Act is being implemented with greater success than the federal government has experienced are coming to the president’s aid in a WaPo op-ed.

But one paragraph says it all:

The Affordable Care Act has been successful in our states because our political and community leaders grasped the importance of expanding health-care coverage and have avoided the temptation to use health-care reform as a political football.

Unfortunately, an enormous number of Americans, including a disproportionate share of the uninsured, live in states whose political leaders have refused to set up insurance exchanges, refused to expand Medicaid, spent political capital discouraging people from improving the system and from using it, and have used health-care reform as a political football, baseball, basketball, soccer ball, bocce ball, ping-pong ball…you name it. In noting this extraordinary pattern of sabotage, no one is absolving the administration or Congress of there contributions to the political and substantive problems afflicting Obamacare; some of its was baked into the cake via the ACA’s decentralized structure (though no one, of course, anticipated the Supreme Court would make the Medicaid expansion optional).

All in all, though, the fate of the Affordable Care Act will depend more on political willpower than on IT genus or the accuracy of its designers’ assumption about who will or won’t participate in the insurance exchanges. At a time when Republicans and MSM gabbers are all but taking live betting odds on Democrats abandoning Obamacare en masse, it’s good to see three governors pushing back.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

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