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“The Education Of Scott Brown”: A Slowly Dawning Lesson, Running Against An Abstraction Is Easy

Less than two years after losing his re-election bid in his home state, former Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) is apparently trying again, this time running in New Hampshire – where’s he still learning quite a bit.

It’s not altogether clear why Brown is running in the Granite State, but his strategy has nevertheless taken shape: the Republican intends to hit the campaign trail complaining about the Affordable Care Act. It worked in one state in 2010, Brown figures, so maybe it’ll work in a different state in 2014.

With this in mind, Brown visited with state Rep. Herb Richardson (R-N.H.) and his wife over the weekend at the lawmaker’s home, where the Senate candidate called the ACA a “monstrosity.” Sam Stein flagged an account of the meeting from the local newspaper (pdf):

Richardson was injured on the job and was forced to live on his workers’ comp payments for an extended period of time, which ultimately cost the couple their house on Williams Street. The couple had to pay $1,100 a month if they wanted to maintain their health insurance coverage under the federal COBRA law.

Richardson said he only received some $2,000 a month in workers’ comp. payments, however, leaving little for them to live on. “Thank God for Obamacare!” his wife exclaimed.

Now, thanks to the subsidy for which they qualify, the Richardsons only pay $136 a month for health insurance that covers them both.

The state lawmaker added that the health care law, which Brown claims to abhor, has been a “financial lifesaver” for his family.

According to the local reporter, the former senator listened to the Richardsons’ perspective and then changed the subject.

Running against an abstraction is easy; running against a law that’s currently benefiting millions of families nationwide is a little trickier. That may slowly be dawning on Brown right about now.

Speaking of New Hampshire, Stein also had this report out of the Granite State the other day.

The former chair of the New Hampshire Republican Party will save $1,000 a month in premiums for his family’s health care package after signing up for a new policy through the Obamacare exchange.

But Fergus Cullen said the savings aren’t enough to turn him into a supporter of the new health care law.

Apparently, Cullen’s catastrophic-coverage plan was phased out under ACA guidelines, which forced the former state GOP chair to transition to a new plan – with no annual or lifetime caps, and which can’t be taken away if Cullen gets stick – that will save the Republican and his family $12,000 a year in premiums.

For his part, Cullen, concerned about out-of-pocket costs, says he still prefers his old plan and wrote about his experience in the Union Leader, acknowledging the trade-offs.


By: Steve Benen, The Maddow Blog, March 20, 2014

March 21, 2014 Posted by | Affordable Care Act, Scott Brown | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


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