The right’s “narrative skewing”: How it dupes itself over Obamacare, Benghazi and Christie
If I had to craft an irresponsibly optimistic prognosis for liberals looking ahead to 2014 and 2016, the short version would probably go something like this:
Forget about Obamacare's rocky rollout. The law has already hit escape velocity, and by November 2014 it will be a political wash and a bourgeoning success story. By 2016 it'll be a huge asset for Democrats. If Republicans don't figure out how to come to terms with its permanence, they will doom themselves for another four years. And even if they do, they'll have to grapple with the fact that their tireless campaign to destroy Hillary Clinton with ugly Benghazi conspiracy theories has already failed, and their own strongest candidate -- Chris Christie -- is about to be permanently crippled by the George Washington Bridge scandal.
Maybe that'll all turn out to be right. But I think it'd be a bad idea for liberals to saunter through the next year or three with such untempered expectations. Obamacare could easily be a political liability for Democrats in November, and even though I don't doubt its permanence -- or at least the permanence of its coverage guarantee -- it's possible that it'll never actually be a big political winner. By 2016 we could easily be on to something else. Benghazi conspiracy theories probably won't crawl out of the conservative fever swamp into the mainstream, but perhaps Benghazi itself will contribute to a line of broader questioning that ultimately damages Hillary's candidacy in a way that Bridgegate never does lasting damage to Christie.