May 29, 2018


Have Democrats Finally Found A Strategy For 2018 Midterms? (David Thornton, 5/29/18, The Resurgent)

The biggest issue that Democrats hope to capitalize on is healthcare. Repeal of Obamacare has been a Republican goal since the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, but after last year's failure to pass a reform bill, the GOP has gone silent on the issue. Meanwhile health insurance premiums are increasing both for Obamacare policies and the market as a whole.

Democratic primary winners believe that the solution to the health insurance crisis is to expand Medicare to cover all Americans, a back-door plan to institute a single-payer health care system. Axios reports that Democratic candidates who support varying versions of Medicare-for-all are often winning primaries against candidates backed by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

Although it is tempting for conservatives to assume that single-payer health care would be a nonstarter for most Americans, the idea polls pretty well. A March 2018 poll from the nonpartisan Kaiser Foundation found 59 percent of Americans like the idea of Medicare-for-all. When the national health plan was made a voluntary option, the share of those in favor increased to 75 percent, including 64 percent of Republicans.

Perhaps ominously for Republicans running against the idea, 74 percent of independents favored the idea of an optional national health insurance plan. The big question is how voters in swing House and Senate districts will view the idea.

"People are increasingly happy with the Affordable Care Act, but they are increasingly unhappy with the health-care system writ large," said Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.). "I think there is a greater willingness to accept a bigger role for public programs in repairing the health-care system." [,...]

A second plan of attack for Democrats is to blame high gas prices on the Trump Administration. [...]

In early May, Patrick DeHaan of Gas Buddy told the New York Post that prices were already affected, even before Trump announced the decision to withdraw from the Obama Iran deal. "The market has already baked in that Trump is going to opt out of the Iran deal. Oil is several dollars per barrel higher because of it, DeHaan said.

"It's well known that geopolitical instability drives oil prices, and gas prices, around the world higher and higher," said Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.). "The Trump administration's chaotic approach to foreign policy not only served instability around the world, it certainly serves to drive up oil prices higher and higher."

Posted by at May 29, 2018 6:56 PM