As Clock Ticks, Fierce Turnout Effort for Health Law - Capstone Brokerage

Handout Paper Piles
By: Michael Shear (NY Times) July 2013

WASHINGTON — When Denis R. McDonough, the White House chief of staff, first saw the document in a meeting in the Roosevelt Room, he immediately dispatched his aides to the West Wing basement to get copies for all of President Obama’s top advisers.

Royal blue and emblazoned with the White House seal, the “Official Affordable Care Act Enrollment Countdown” is a paper calendar that keeps track of the time before uninsured Americans can begin signing up for coverage under the president’s signature health care law.

On Tuesday, the top page said simply: “70 Days Left.”

The message is clear. Few things are more important to the White House this year than a successful health care rollout on Oct. 1, when millions of uninsured Americans will be required to obtain private health coverage in government-run marketplaces. Getting it right — or wrong — will help determine Mr. Obama’s place in history.

Enter the Obamacare Team, some two dozen political operators and data-crunching technocrats charged with carrying out the biggest health care overhaul since Medicare in the 1960s — but with more pitfalls. Their job is to sell the law to large numbers of Americans who remain divided about its value and wary of its impact.

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