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Obama Health Care Now on Shaky Ground in Iowa

President Obama has long held that Iowa is the birthplace of his health care reform, but it may be that voters in that state are beginning to disagree with the president’s plan.

Iowa has long been a birthplace of sorts for President Obama’s health care reform law. In the spring of 2007, when Obama was still a U.S. senator and presidential candidate up against the formidable Hillary Clinton, he talked for the first time publicly about his plan for a health care overhaul. He unveiled his plan in front of a friendly audience and put the plan in simple terms – assuaging concerns about the increasing costs of health care and talking about the plight of the common man.

Eventually, when the bill was signed into law in March, 2010, Obama celebrated by going back to Iowa City and talked about how instrumental the state was in getting the groundbreaking legislation passed. He noted to the crowd, “Because of you, this is the place where change began.” But what a difference time makes. Less than two years later, Iowa is no longer a “friendly” state for Obama and residents of Iowa are uncertain about their feelings on “Obamacare.”

One Iowan, a woman who survived breast cancer, notes that she agrees in principle with the health care law, but she thinks the plan is simply too expensive and that it should be changed to be more cost-effective. She notes, “We’ve got to do more to cut costs. We’re trying to cover everything now, and everything into the future, and we simply aren’t going to be able to afford that. Everybody needs to be covered, but there has to be limits. We can’t pay for everything.” That is a familiar sentiment around the country – everyone knows there isn’t enough money to pay for this new plan, and everyone knows it’s probably not realistic to raise tax revenues to pay for it. The only realistic solution, then, is to change it fundamentally so that it can work.

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