November 28 2013
While most Millennials prepare for a day of turkey, football, and, of course, awkward personal questions from relatives, President Barack Obama has figured out a way to add a new complication to our Thanksgiving dinners. How?
The President’s Organizing for Action has launched a “Health Care for the Holidays” campaign, complete with a video in which the parents tell their Millennial child that they have something really important to talk to him about. What might that be? The adult child imagines his parents springing on him that they are going to move in with him, have joined a cult, know what he did on a trip to Vegas or even that they got matching tattoos.
Turns out they want to talk to him about buying health insurance.
This campaign is just the latest desperate attempt by ObamaCare supporters to try to hector young Americans into the exchanges. This year, the Administration convened a meeting of celebrities, reached out to the NFL and held wine-and-cheese parties for moms to try to recruit these groups to sell ObamaCare. Now ObamaCare supporters are trying to invade a holiday.
The Administration seems to think the reason why Millennials are hesitant to sign up is because of a lack of persuasive messaging. But the problem isn’t with the Administration’s sales tactics—the problem is with the product itself. ObamaCare’s coverage mandates and pricing restrictions mean that healthy young Americans will be overpaying for the insurance they buy. In fact, a study from The National Center for Public Policy Research found that millions of single people ages 18-34 without children would be at least $500 better off in 2014 if they opted out of insurance and paid the penalty.
Not surprisingly, the early enrollment data shows that young Americans aren’t rushing to buy their ObamaCare policy. White House analysis suggests that 2.7 million of the 7 million people they hope will enroll in the first year must be between the ages of 18 and 35 for the marketplace exchanges to work. That’s almost 40 percent. But early reports indicate that enrollees were generally older people with medical problems. For example, in Kentucky, almost 3 out of 4 enrollees were over 35.
Sadly, the Administration doesn’t seem to have figured out that just talking about ObamaCare differently isn’t going to make it more attractive to young people. On the “Health Care for the Holidays” webpage, there’s a packing list, tips on how to plan the talk, suggestions for starting the conversation about the need to buy health insurance and even an option to pledge to have the talk. As to the tips, the website encourages parents to find a quiet place, start the talk early and be honest about their feelings.
This latest campaign is more evidence that liberals view young people less as adults and more as malleable children.
Take the Colorado ObamaCare “Let’s Get Physical” advertisement featuring a cute couple and birth control pills with the caption, “OMG, he’s hot! Let’s hope he’s as easy to get as this birth control. My health insurance covers the pill, which means all I have to worry about is getting him between the covers.” Or the “Brosurance” advertisement that includes a young man doing a keg stand with the caption, “Keg stands are crazy. Not having health insurance is crazier. Don’t tap into your beer money to cover those medical bills.”
It’s insulting that these ObamaCare advocates presume that the way to connect with young people is by referencing sex and alcohol.
Though it isn’t just these messaging tactics that are insulting. The entire government-knows-best attitude present in these ObamaCare marketing efforts is an insult to American citizens. Mr. President, please keep your individual mandate out of my Thanksgiving dinner!
Karin Agness is a senior fellow at Independent Women's Forum and founder of the Network of enlightened Women.