Skip to comments.Reid: ObamaCare will help Dems hold the Senate majority in 2014
Posted on 12/18/2013 11:10:39 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) thinks the healthcare law will ultimately help Senate Democrats in 2014 even though some incumbents fear a backlash at the polls.
I think for sure it will be a net positive, said Reid, who expects the law to become more of a political benefit as problems are smoothed out by Election Day. I think so by then for sure.
Reid said feedback to the Obama administration from Democratic senators has helped improve the federal enrollment site HealthCare.gov since its disastrous launch in October.
Its gotten significantly better, but it was significantly bad so it has a long way to go, he said Wednesday during an interview with The Hill in his Capitol office overlooking the National Mall.
The Senate leader noted that Phil Schiliro, a senior White House adviser coordinating the implementation of the new healthcare law, met earlier Wednesday with Democratic senators who are facing tough reelection races next year.
Phil Schiliro ... came up today and had a good meeting with my 2014ers. The discussions were led by [Senate Democratic Whip Dick] Durbin [(D-Ill.)] and it was an extremely positive, good meeting, Reid said.
Thats what weve needed from the White House for some time now, is someone to be able to reach out to, he said.
Reid said White House chief of staff Denis McDonough is a good person but hes overwhelmed with work, and he did not have the capacity, which is time, to do the hands-on work that is necessary with my senators.
He said senior White House staffers werent responsive at the height of the public uproar over the botched rollout of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
"There was a period of time there where there were no questions that were answered because they were so overwhelmed with trying to get that program fixed," he said.
Reids biggest political job next year will be protecting the Senate majority and the vulnerable Democratic incumbents in states like Arkansas, Louisiana and North Carolina.
The only thing I want from the White House in 2014 is for them to be available to my senators who are running for reelection, Reid said.
He said he doesnt worry that President Obamas approval ratings, which have hit the low 40s, will affect Senate races next year, even though Republicans will do everything they can to tie Democratic candidates to the presidents promise that people would be able to keep their health plans if they like them.
"His numbers are going to go up. It's a question of what's gone on with this healthcare thing. It will get better," he said. "I've seen this over the years. You'd be surprised what three months' difference makes."
His hallmark as leader has been to strictly limit votes on politically charged amendments, which Republicans offer to collect political ammo for Senate campaigns.
Reid will likely continue that approach next year by teeing up votes on legislation designed to highlight differences between Democrats and Republicans on the economy.
He said he would make combating income inequality his top priority when Congress returns from the Christmas recess, starting with legislation to renew federal unemployment benefits.
Were going to come back and were going to do unemployment. Im pleased that as I understand it that [Sen.] Jack Reid [(D-R.I.)] and [Sen.] Dean Heller [(R-Nev.)] are going to be the people who are going to move the bill forward, he said. Then were going to do flood insurance. Then were going to do minimum wage.
Those things are not going to take care of the income inequality although it would help significantly, he said. And then we have process important nominations.
Democrats expect Obama to make jobs and the economy his chief focus in the State of the Union address on Jan. 28.
Reid will have some work to do to unify the Senate Democratic Caucus on raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, a proposal championed by Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa).
Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.), who is a top GOP target next year, does not support the legislation, and Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) prefers the president's initial proposal to raise it to $9 an hour.
Looking forward to the next debt-ceiling fight, Reid said he does not expect Republicans will force another standoff after Octobers 16-day government shutdown pushed the GOPs approval rating to a historic low.
He also expressed confidence that Republicans will not be able to capture the six seats they need to regain control of the Senate.
He thinks Democrats have a good chance of picking up the Senate-held seat in Georgia, where Michelle Nunn, the daughter of former Sen. Sam Nunn (D-Ga.), is running.
Reid is also heartened by the addition of former Clinton White House chief of staff John Podesta to Obamas inner circle of advisers.
John Podesta is going to bring some political savvy to the White House, and I think that's so important, he told Bloomberg Television last week.
What happens to those plans to send the kids to live with the grandparents for the summer, when little Josh needs to keep up with his allergy shots? What decision will a family make when Dad needs to move to start his new job, while the kids stay behind to finish up the school year? What kind of financial pain will be inflicted on American contract workers, who rent a hotel residence for three months while they complete a project? And who will buy a vacation home when the costs include out-of-pocket medical expenses?
Moreover, ObamaCare may soon start impacting access to emergency room care. With Americans no longer able to receive routine medical services when they travel, will they start showing up in emergency rooms for sore throats and backaches? And how will these new throngs of patients affect the waiting time of people with genuine medical emergencies?
"I have 35 years in the industry, and I've never seen anything like this," the New York insurance broker told me. "ObamaCare is a rolling disaster. Every time we go down the road, we get hit with another catastrophe." Source
Just when I think Dingey Harry is just a little “touched”, he proves me wrong. It’s worse than that. He’s NUCKING FUTS!
Reid is backstabbing everyone. He owns this crap, not the freshmen democrats to be.
The GOPe is the only thing that will help the Democrats keep the Senate in 2014
It’s written into Obamacare that the Democrat Party will be the only party ?
Harry needs to keep his butt muscles tightly clenched, so as to make sure no intelligent thoughts accidentally leak out
Indeed, the fascist GOPe think they have the ability to be self sufficient with back stabbing liberals. The liberals have their jobs insured by the back stabbing of the GoPe and the stupid GOPe is falling right in their trap with illegals and gun control.
Actually, I think the DIMS will hold the Senate and take the House in 2014—Not as a result of anything they’ve done, but because the GOP-e just can’t abide the conservative component of their base and are actively attacking them.
I hope everyone of the bastards run on it!!!!
Liberals tend to exhibit a twisted version of the “battered wife” syndrome. They get beat up, but somehow always blame conservatives. Then, after a few news cycles, they go right back to the elected and appointed liberals who beat them up. They delude themselves by thinking that it will not happen again.
As odd as that thinking is to the conservative mind, Reid may well be right.
Harry Reid leads McConnell and Boehner around by their “noses.”
One wonders if attorneys and show people and other leftists of significant means might worry a bit about this "income inequality" chant.
They would be more effective if they simply handed it out on the street corners.
We have to be a bit careful of overconfidence here.
I believed that no POTUS could be re-elected with 8% unemployment, $4 gas, surging food prices and trillion dollar deficits.
Harry Screed is not FRICKIN’ NUTS he really believes this and Mc Connell and J. Boner will bend over forwards and get screwed again because they are all out of touch. We will do nothing about it but talk.