Transparency Bill Shows GOP Election-year Shift On Obamacare

The Republican-controlled House this week is set to follow up passage of an Obamacare privacy bill with a transparency measure that could attract dozens of Democratic votes — a sign the GOP is shifting from efforts to repeal the health care law to a more nuanced approach in a midterm election year.

Republican leadership wants the federal government to issue weekly reports on enrollment through the law’s state-based insurance markets. Right now, the Obama administration is putting out data once a month.

The legislation arrives on the heels of a House measure that would require the government to notify consumers within two days if their personal data is breached on the web-based health exchanges. The chamber passed that bill Friday, 291 to 122, with the help of 67 Democrats.

The GOP hopes to win back the Senate and retain its House majority in November by maintaining a focus on Obamacare’s failings. The Affordable Care Act got a rocky rollout in the fall, and the Obama administration has had to beat back criticism over the law’s coverage requirements and mandates.

GOP strategist Ford O’Connell said the law remains the “golden goose” for a Republican Party hoping to hold sway with voters in November.

“That is their job — to keep the spotlight on it and offer solutions, where plausible,” he said.

Read more from Tom Howell Jr. at The Washington Times

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Analysis & Political Strategy