With hours before the deadline to sign up for coverage under the
"I think everyone is going to be really surprised and pleased how well this has turned out," Biden said on Ray's daytime talk show, where he leavened his healthcare message with stories of his efforts to continue "romancing" and "chasing" his wife, Jill.
On a day when healthcare.gov was overloaded by the last-minute surge in traffic, the vice president stressed the flexibility of the March 31 deadline, noting that as long as consumers had begun the enrollment process online at the federal portal or through the call centers they could "stay in line" for coverage. "Get in the queue now. Get in the queue. There's still time today," he said.
The bitter political fight over the law has drawn tens of millions of dollars in anti-Obamacare ads from outside groups. Yet signs of a late surge in enrollment may ultimately point to the success of the White House’s unprecedented social media campaign and efforts to drive signups through disparate cultural venues, from sports radio to hip-hop shows. (Keying in on women as healthcare decision-makers, President
Longtime Obama allies in Hollywood and the music industry, including John Legend, Kerry Washington, Connie Britton, Zooey Deschanel and Sarah Silverman took to
"There is nothing sexier than someone with health insurance. #GetCovered! Go to Healthcare.gov now," comedian Zach Braff tweeted.
Online, Obama’s interview with
And with an eye toward the key younger demographic, the White House in recent weeks has dispatched Obama, Biden and First Lady Michelle Obama on shows including "Live With
In certain states, the administration's efforts to attract attention to the law were being supplemented by groups such as Enroll America and Planned Parenthood. On Monday, the latter said its 600 canvassers had been knocking on an average of 29,000 doors a day, armed with tablets that allowed families to complete their applications online right then.
Enroll America, a nonprofit organization set up to increase healthcare access, has held events at community colleges across Arizona, and it hosted a bus tour across Texas that made stops in six cities to encourage enrollment within the Latino community, whose interest has lagged.
Organizing for Action, the nonprofit advocacy group that is the successor to Obama's campaign organization, used the March 31 deadline as a tool to raise money: "While we're fighting like hell to get as many Americans signed up for healthcare as possible, we're also facing a huge fundraising deadline at midnight tonight," Executive Director Jon Carson wrote in an email solicitation to supporters. "I'm asking you to help right now."
Though the White House and its allies still have a long way to go before the midterm elections, new polls suggest that views of the healthcare law have recovered since the disastrous rollout last fall. An
The most encouraging news for Obama and his allies may be the upward tilt among young adults, who are crucial to the law's success. About 54% of young adults under the age of 40 said they approved of the law in the ABC/Washington Post survey, compared with 38% in November.