Republican Senator John Thune, R-South Dakota, beclowned himself this week when he composed a tweet meant to slam Obamacare which ended up sounding like a contradictory circular argument, as if the President will be to blame if the Supreme Court guts the law when they decide the case of King v. Burwell.
Six million people risk losing their health care subsidies, yet @POTUS continues to deny that Obamacare is bad for the American people.— Senator John Thune (@SenJohnThune) June 8, 2015
From Mother Jones
To an outside observer who may not be terribly familiar with Obamacare (née the Affordable Care Act), this seems alarming. Whoa, Obamacare may cost people their health-care subsidies? such observers may think. And the answer is, haha, well, sort of.
The subsidies that might be lost if the Supreme Court rules against the Obama administration in the case of King v. Burwell are subsidies ... that exist within the framework of Obamacare. Obamacare isn't threatening those subsidies, Obamacare is providing them. The threat to the subsidies lies with the Supreme Court case, which could interpret language within the law to exclude people who signed up through HealthCare.gov from access to those subsidies.
How Not to Make the SCOTUS Case Against Obamacare, in One Tweet
. . . On its own terms, this was difficult or impossible to parse. The aforementioned six million people living in states that count on the federal exchange to sell plans were not at risk until lawsuits were filed to end the subsidies. If the loss of subsidies was bad for the American people, then how was that the fault of the administration, who argued against the plaintiffs and called the legal challenge dilatory? Thune's Twitter timeline became a torrent of people wondering what he was talking about. Even conservatives started to ask if Thune realized how tightly he'd been wrapped around the axle.
Twitter had a field day with this one! As it should be!
@SenJohnThune But a one-sentence fix would prevent the aforementioned 6 million from losing subsidies, no?— daveweigel (@daveweigel) June 8, 2015
I mean the fundamental leap of logic you had to make there... to be honest it's almost beautiful. @SenJohnThune— Jesse Berney (@jesseberney) June 8, 2015
.@SenJohnThune You do realize that everyone on the planet can read your tweets, right?— Allan Brauer (@allanbrauer) June 8, 2015
Remember that time when people thought John Thune was a presidential contender?— Ian Millhiser (@imillhiser) June 8, 2015
@imillhiser What's the hottest take on Obama's controversial healthcare law? … 😎 Thune in to find out!— Greg Greene (@ggreeneva) June 9, 2015