California Democrats Say GOP Website Misleads Public on ACA
Several Democratic lawmakers in California are criticizing a Republican-run website that they say misleads the public about the Affordable Care Act, the Sacramento Bee reports (White, Sacramento Bee, 12/4).
Background on Website
The Assembly GOP Caucus said the website -- coveringhealthcareca.com -- was developed to be a resource for state residents who want to learn about ACA provisions.
According to a Los Angeles Times column published on Monday, the site features:
- Mostly negative stories on the ACA; and
- A calculator of penalties that individuals will face under the law if they do not purchase health coverage.
On Tuesday, state Rep. Janice Hahn (D-San Pedro) called for the site to be taken down.
Hahn said the site is "little more than an attempt by [ACA] opponents to undermine the law's success and prevent people who need health coverage from getting it" (Mason, "PolitiCal," Los Angeles Times, 12/4).
On Wednesday, California Democratic Party Chair John Burton said the website demonstrates that "Republicans in California have no qualms about following their national party's lead when it comes to spreading misinformation about" the ACA.
In addition, Assembly member Jimmy Gomez (D-Los Angeles) sent a letter to the Assembly Rules Committee asking it to investigate the website.
"I respect any legislator's right to have a different perspective ... but then they have to be upfront about what they are advocating for," Gomez said (Sacramento Bee, 12/4).
Sabrina Lockhart, a spokesperson for the Assembly GOP Caucus, said the group still supports the website.
"It is simply an informational resource to answer people's question[s] about the health care law," she said.
Meanwhile, Lockhart said attention directed at the site has led to a tenfold increase in web traffic in the past week ("PolitiCal," Los Angeles Times, 12/4).
Lockhart said that four state lawmakers have sent mailers directing their constituents to the website. She noted that the mailers were approved by the Assembly Rules Committee (Sacramento Bee, 12/4).
According to "PolitiCal," several changes have been made to the website in recent weeks, such as adding a prominent link to the official Covered California site ("PolitiCal," Los Angeles Times, 12/4).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.