A pair of new studies argue that the GOP's anti-Obamacare ads may have actually increased enrollment in blue states and the majority of the people who enrolled — even Republicans — like their plans.
The Commonwealth Fund's survey found that 9.5 million people gained insurance during the Obamacare enrollment period. Of those enrollees, 73 percent are happy with their private insurance plan and 87 percent are happy with Medicaid. Meanwhile the Brookings Institute argues that fewer people might have enrolled if conservative groups like the Koch-backed Americans for Prosperity hadn't invested millions of dollars in anti-Obamacare ads. Instead of simply deterring people from enrolling, the ads seem to have raised awareness of health care reform.
The Commonwealth Fund's survey found that the uninsured rate of 19-64 year olds dropped from 20 percent during July-to-September 2013 to 15 percent during April-to-June 2014. In other words, the uninsured rate three months before Obamacare's October through March enrollment period was 5 percent higher than it was during the three months after. Young adults — those under 34 years old — saw their uninsured rate drop from 28 percent to 18 percent. The most damning data point is that the uninsured rate among poor people dropped from 28 percent to 17 percent in states that expanded Medicaid. In states that didn't expand Medicaid, the uninsured rate dropped from 38 percent to 36 percent.