Once Democrats actually pass a bill and get it signed into law, contrary to the conventional wisdom: the selling is the easiest part. Right now we have Republicans who can pick one or two items and exaggerate their negative impact on either the budget, the healthcare system, tax burden, or whatever. Democrats then have to defend the charge and try to straighten out the public record. It isn't appropriate right now to go on offense in campaign mode. Because,
there's no campaign.
But once there is actual legislation, and the election season rolls around, Democrats will be able to point to millions of people who will benefit from the new law. Of course Democrats will cherry pick and choose the people who get the most benefit with the least burden. But that's politics.
Then the question will be:
Democrat X stood with President Obama to prevent insurance companies from Dropping Citizen Y since he has Cancer. Mr. Republican wants to repeal the law and leave them out in the cold.
Democrat X passed a new law that guarantees women access to mammograms. The Republicans want to take this right away from you.
Democrats passed a law that guarantees insurance companies can't deny coverage to you because you have a pre-existing condition. The Republicans think that is bad.
Ad after ad can show different benefits that are scheduled to take effect soon, and the Republican who opposed them and stood with the Insurance companies. Worse yet they want to take the benefits away.
What about the benefits starting years from now? 2013?2014?
Democrats stand for moving up the benefits to next year. Republicans want to cancel them!
By having the healthcare bill start off in the future, it gives us a chance to run on speeding up the benefits and letting the insurance companies pay.
Politics is all about offense. We can go on offense once we have succeeded in passing a new law.
The day it is law, we then can list all of the things we think should have been in the bill, and will work to do so in the next congress.
"Republicans had 8 years to fix the system and they refused, now they want to take away your healthcare rights; well Democrats are trying to speed them up."
Until then, the Republicans, who have no responsibility and very little political character, can and will say anything.