Obama talks to Web MD and Ryan Seacrest to tout Obamacare
March 14th, 2014
02:39 PM ET
9 years ago

Obama talks to Web MD and Ryan Seacrest to tout Obamacare

Washington (CNN) - As part of the administration's final push to encourage people to sign up for health insurance before the March 31 deadline, President Barack Obama spent nearly 30 minutes Friday answering questions about premium prices, Medicaid expansion and other issues from WebMD users from all 50 states.

Lisa Zamosky, WebMD's health care reform expert, said the site got a "huge response," receiving hundreds of questions and from some users who were concerned about the Affordable Care Act, others who were confused about the law, and still others who wanted to thank the President for signing it into legislation.

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In response to a question about high premiums, Obama encouraged people to log onto Healthcare.gov to find out about the plans being provided and whether they qualify for financial help, in the form of a tax credit.

"If you are young it may end up costing as little as $50 for good, solid coverage that not only protects you in the case of illness or accident, but also allows you to get free preventive care," the President said. "What I would suggest for most folks is that having good, solid insurance with some deductibles and co-pays is better than no insurance at all."

The administration says 4.2 million people signed up for coverage on the state or federal exchanges by the end of February, but unless the rate of signups increases significantly this month, it is unlikely officials will reach their goal of 6 million signups by March 31.

The President received a lot of attention when he appeared earlier this week on the Funny or Die web series called "Between Two Ferns", hosted by actor Zach Galifianakis. The internet program is popular with the young adults the administration is hoping to attract.

Another interview Friday with DJ and tv personality Ryan Seacrest and recruiting celebrity pitchmen like basketball superstar Lebron James and singer Lance Bass are also part of efforts to drive traffic to the Healthcare.gov website.

The White House touted Friday's event as the first-ever WebMD interview with the President and said the site had "enormous reach with moms and women." The administration has tried to target mothers in particular because of their perceived ability to influence their adult children and other family members to sign up for coverage.


Filed under: Healthcare • Obamacare • President Obama
soundoff (65 Responses)
  1. Silence DoGood

    Obama needs to get the message out. I have talked recently to several people scared to death by rumors and lies spread by conservative talk shows big-mouths. Everything from Obama directly telling doctors to stops seeing patients, to renewed death panel nonsense, to young people saying they were told NOT to sign up. Are these bloviators ever taking responsibility for causing panic under false pretense? Another example of domestic terrorism. The Muslim leader that incited the 1st twin towers attack was arrested even though all he did was talk. Why not Rush, if actual damages can be established?

    March 14, 2014 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  2. Chris-E...al

    How could Russia be a threat with two nuke powered subs 100miles off the east coast an a supply ship at a Cuban port be a prob ? nae no prob at all . right !

    March 14, 2014 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    Silence DoGood

    Obama needs to get the message out. I have talked recently to several people scared to death by rumors and lies spread by conservative talk shows big-mouths. ... ... ... ...
    ------------------–
    Pres. Obama dropped the ball when he jumped the gun and embraced the nickname "Obamacare", instead of sticking to the Affordable Care Act until it's success could disprove all of the misconceptions lies associated "Obamacare". We hear about polls all of the time that show significant percentages of people who like the ACA, but dislike Obamacare.

    March 14, 2014 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  4. Tampa Tim

    Chris E – Are you referring to the August 2009 article?

    March 14, 2014 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  5. Silence DoGood

    @Chris-E...al
    How could Russia be a threat with two nuke powered subs 100miles off the east coast an a supply ship at a Cuban port be a prob ? nae no prob at all . right !
    ---------
    Dude, focus. We have moved on to ACA over here. And you probably thinking of a video game with the "nuke" thing. "nae no prob at all" and I cannot translate that one. Consider decaf.

    March 14, 2014 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
  6. Deathstalker74

    "Obama needs to get the message out. I have talked recently to several people scared to death by rumors and lies spread by conservative talk shows big-mouths"

    What a crock. You don't need to listen to conservative talk show hosts to know that this thing is a failure. Go out and talk to the people in your neighborhood. I've spoken to at LEAST six families who have been negatively impacted by this tax – who have seen their premiums and deductibles skyrocket. If you're trying to sell Obamacare (tax), you're either being disingenuous, ignorant, or you've been paid to lie and most likely work for this administration in some form or other.

    March 14, 2014 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  7. yolanda

    @Silence, it sounds like you need to expand your group of friends to include some people who can be taught how to change the TV channel. Perhaps you can direct them to this forum, since it is filled with posters who are unbiased and balanced in their postings....you know, like you.

    March 14, 2014 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  8. Rudy NYC

    Chris-E...al

    How could Russia be a threat with two nuke powered subs 100miles off the east coast an a supply ship at a Cuban port be a prob ? nae no prob at all . right !
    --------------------–
    Thanks, that's good to know. Seeing how it has gotten you all worried, I know I'll be able to sleep better at night because I realize that you'e going to be up all night worrying, and keeping an eye on the situation for us. Thanks, again. Your pleasure.

    March 14, 2014 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  9. Reggie53

    If Obamacare is such a good program, why does he have to keep pushing it. Everybody should be out there signing up like crazy if it a good thing for us. He knows along with democrats that this program is not good for the American people and they should not try to fool us into buying it. They should stop telling us lies.....tell us the pros and cons of the program and let us make up our own minds if we want it but they keep trying to push it down our throats.

    March 14, 2014 03:14 pm at 3:14 pm |
  10. CALIFORNIA

    Obamacare is as pathetic as the person it's named after.

    How fitting.

    March 14, 2014 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  11. Name

    I think u s navy accidently shot down 777 and now trying to cover up, the u s can find a pin in the ocean and not finding the 777 giant. Imposible

    March 14, 2014 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  12. Wake up People!

    He has to push it to at least try and combat some of the misconceptions put out by the Kock Bros million dollar ads.

    The question should be if it's so bad why spend millions on ads, it should implode on its own.

    But the Kock boys know it takes a lot of money to make it implode.

    March 14, 2014 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  13. Bill from GA

    Rudy NYC – " Pres. Obama dropped the ball when he jumped the gun and embraced the nickname "Obamacare"... "

    If our President had to Dumb Down everything to counter the idiots who believe everything from the right-wing propaganda network, our cause is hopeless, our country is doomed, and all progressives should just surrender.

    That may be the case, as the right-wing propaganda network seems to be gaining ground. Temporarily, I hope.

    I think "Obamacare" is a Great Name for it. 100 years from now, Barry will still be getting credit.

    March 14, 2014 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  14. Sniffit

    "Consider decaf."

    And Zyprexa.

    March 14, 2014 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  15. Tampa Tim

    Ever hear of "republicare" or "bagger care?" It allows 45 million uninsured people to remain uninsured, so they can be one illness away from an economic disaster.

    Thanks to ACA, the uninsured rate is the lowest since 2008, so something is working. The good news for republicans is that red staters get to keep their junk policies and red state legislatures have made sure their uninsured voters cannot get on Medicare. Sounds like a winner and everyone should be happy.

    March 14, 2014 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  16. Silence DoGood

    @Reggie53
    If Obamacare is such a good program, why does he have to keep pushing it. Everybody should be out there signing up like crazy if it a good thing for us. He knows along with democrats that this program is not good for the American people and they should not try to fool us into buying it. They should stop telling us lies.....tell us the pros and cons of the program and let us make up our own minds if we want it but they keep trying to push it down our throats.
    -----------–
    The converse can be said of course. If ACA is an obvious failure and has no chance to succeed and everyone knows it and it is about to crash and burn on its own, why not just let it go? Why are the Koch's spending millions and conservative h@ckers writing programs and other sabotage efforts going on? Why waste the effort and $$$ unless they know it is going better than tea-terrorists claim? Where is the balanced list of pros and cons from Rush?

    March 14, 2014 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  17. Hector Slagg

    Whazzat?,
    Obama needs to get the message out? Now there's a Shovel Ready Project for ya. Unfortunately Obama's a few million shovels short. Got Shovel's ??

    March 14, 2014 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  18. Tampa Tim

    Republicans attack machine goes after the following: seniors, students, minorities, the gay community, veterans, the poor, the uninsured, the homeless, immigrants, the American worker, those earning the minimum wage. Sooner or later, friends of people in these groups will vote the republicans out.

    March 14, 2014 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  19. bobo

    Obamacare is a Disaster! How many have signed up? And.... how many of those actually PAID for the healthcare.

    March 14, 2014 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  20. Silence DoGood

    @yolanda
    @Silence, it sounds like you need to expand your group of friends to include some people who can be taught how to change the TV channel. Perhaps you can direct them to this forum, since it is filled with posters who are unbiased and balanced in their postings....you know, like you.
    ------–
    Thanks, but my biggest worry is the older Americans, particularly susceptible to this kind of nonsense, that are afraid to go to their doctors now (I know several) because of the last thing Rush or whoever said. He can lie, people are literally scared away from help, and he just walks free without responsibility?

    March 14, 2014 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  21. Tampa Tim

    If Obamacare is such a bad program, why did the Kochs spend $800 million to undermine it?

    March 14, 2014 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  22. bobo

    "If you like your plan, you can keep it." " If you like your Doctor, you can keep your Doctor... period."

    Obama Lied in order to get this disaster of a Law passed!

    March 14, 2014 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  23. smith

    Reggie53 is spot on with his comment. People aren`t signing up in droves because the ACA is not helping everybody, it only helps a small protion of the country. The lies are on both sides of the isle and Obama. All the ACA really is redistribution of wealth.

    March 14, 2014 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  24. Sam

    @CALIFORNIA Well said.

    March 14, 2014 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  25. ThinkAgain: Don't like Congress? Get rid of the majority repub/tea bag members

    From the UnitedHealthCare website FAQ:

    Q. I'm young and healthy. Why do I need health insurance?
    A. Despite your age and health, you never know when a serious injury or illness will strike. You're not invincible. And if you don't have insurance, who'll pay your bills? Do you have the money to pay $1,500 to fix a broken leg or $3,000 to stay in the hospital? Insurance gives you the peace of mind that, yes, most of your medical bills will be covered in case something happens.

    Q. If I get sick but don't have the money to pay, won't doctors and hospitals treat me?
    A. Yes, most doctors and hospitals will treat you, but they will aggressively pursue collection of your unpaid medical bills by turning your account over to a collection agency. Yes, some hospitals write off a certain amount of care each year, called "indigent care," but if you or your family fail to meet strict requirements, they'll come after you to pay. Somebody will pay - either you as a paying patient in the form of higher medical bills, or taxpayers.

    This from a free-market company; who are you going to listen to: Them or the gop/tea bag hacks whose #1 stated goal is to make President Obama fail?

    March 14, 2014 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
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