Liberals Have a New No. 1 Priority: Fix ObamaCare
Alex Pareene: Progressives seeking office better embrace the reality
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 31, 2013 1:39 PM CDT
President Obama shakes hands with supporters after speaking at Boston's Faneuil Hall Wednesday.   (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia)

(Newser) – The problems with the Affordable Care Act have at least accomplished this much for candidates on the left: They now should know what job No. 1 is going forward, writes Alex Pareene at Salon. "The immediate priority—and progressives running for office in 2014 and 2016 should practice saying this out loud—is fixing Obamacare." He's talking about more than tech trouble, however. They need to address what he sees as other fundamental flaws with the ACA, including "coverage gaps, the ways insurance companies will continue to exploit people and rip them off, and the potential for the cost burden on middle-class people to grow."

It's important that liberals acknowledge the problems and propose tangible solutions—like, say, federalizing Medicaid for those who live in states that haven't embraced ObamaCare—rather than simply getting defensive about it, he writes. Along those lines, conservative Rich Lowry writes in Politico that he's already tired of the "whining" he's hearing from Democrats about the new law and why things aren't working. "They insisted on this particular law, at this particular time. They own it. They own every canceled policy, every rate increase, every unintended consequence and every unpopular intended consequence. It is theirs, lock, stock and two smoking barrels." Click for Lowry's full column. Or click for Pareene's full column.