Meet the Press   |  December 08, 2013

Obamacare: A long struggle ahead?

A Meet the Press panel looks at the challenges that still lie ahead for the Affordable Care Act.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> moment is obama care, and the president was out there reselling it this week, katty kay . this is a portion of what he said.

>> if i've got to fight another three years to make sure this law works, then that's what i'll do. that's what we'll do.

>> underscoring that this is really the only job he has in his second term, right?

>> it may be all he gets done in his second term. if he can make this succeed, this will be his legacy issue. and if you look at the chances of getting immigration reform , of getting some kind of comprehensive jobs bill, of getting some kind of infrastructure, of getting tax reform which is what businesses say they'll need, he may have to use the next three years to make it work, and this may be what he's left with as his big legacy issue.

>> but you write it's not just about the website. there are a lot of challenges ahead about will this thing float?

>> the website is not fixed, either, particularly on the backhand. you have to deliver the information to the insurer and you're not getting accurate information to them. they don't know who is signing up. that's the big problem, young people not signing up right now in the numbers they have to to make this work long term, so you'll see problems with people not just losing their insurance policies but beginning to see what these narrow networks in these new policies. i can't keep my doctor, and by the way, maybe the price is not going up in 2014 by policy but by 2015 , and that politics is going to roll out and hurt the democrats.

>> going on the offensive as he did this week, it certainly plee pleases the base. is it enough to change the impression that america has?

>> i think as we begin to see people sign up and we see victories. we heard people talk about, i did not have a way out, i had a preexisting condition. we see him going on college campuses, young people are beginning to sign. i think it will be enough because there is nothing that can have glitches and problems forgotten more than success. i think the success of this, notwithstanding the problems and the blunders, this is the first time millions of people that had no opportunity to have health care and to be insured now has that opportunity, and the critics who have presented no way of doing that will not be able to dampen that as that becomes reality.

>> tom being up here in new york talking to economic leaders, you see the unemployment news this week, positive. we'll show the chart on the screen showing the arc of it over the course of the obama presidency. it's certainly the right direction, but is it really turning a corner? do people feel that in a way that he'll get any credit?

>> no, i don't think they do, david. i don't think charts give people reassurance, and speaking about health care and the unemployment situation. these are two very dynamic situations that we're face ing in this country. a big part of the economy also involves health care . what we don't know yet, despite the president's promises, is not only how the health care industry will respond but what big companies and small companies are doing to see that their best interests are served by all of this, and we can't see how that might play out by the end of his first term. terms of employment . yes, there are encouraging signs that unemployment is going down, but the middle class is still widely separated from the 1% at the top. we know we don't have the skill set in our economy. there is just another report this past week about where america stands when it comes to the rest of the world in terms of educational skills. we have a lot of work to be done. so these are decimal points we're talking about. it's not really dealing with the larger, big picture issue about the american economy .