White House Seeks NBA Assist on Obamacare

Kyle Cheney, Politico, June 19, 2013

Could LeBron James be the next spokesman for Obamacare?

The Obama administration has reached out to the NBA about a potential marketing partnership to promote the health law, POLITICO has learned.

The news, revealed recently by Massachusetts officials who have been in contact with the administration, offers a glimpse at how President Barack Obama’s team plans to push the new coverage options to a public that largely has been clueless about the new health insurance options.

{snip}

It’s unclear whether a potential partnership would put big-name ballplayers—like James, the Miami Heat superstar—at the center of ad campaigns or whether it would be as modest as permitting the administration to affix the NBA logo onto marketing materials. An agreement itself isn’t even a slam dunk; Obamacare is partisan and controversial, and the NBA could decide it doesn’t want to go near it.

But for the administration, the allure is obvious. The NBA season’s calendar tracks closely with the six-month period during which Americans have a chance to sign up for subsidized insurance around the country—beginning on Oct. 1. And NBA fans fit key demographics targeted by supporters of the health law.

“You just can’t be a smoker and be obese or heavy … and be a basketball player. These folks are kind of the picture of youth and health, and in some ways, that’s the target audience,” said Jon Kingsdale, appointed by then-Gov. Mitt Romney in 2006 to oversee the implementation of the Massachusetts health law—which got a big messaging boost from the Boston Red Sox.

Officials with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services declined to comment on talks with the NBA. “We are speaking with a wide range of potential partners and organizations about our efforts to inform Americans of the opportunity to enroll in quality, affordable coverage in the health insurance marketplaces,” an agency spokesman said.

In its first big public call about Obamacare outreach plans Tuesday, Enroll America said it will reach out to professional sports leagues to help encourage people to sign up for insurance. {snip}

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  • Jefferson

    Does LeBron James need “free health care” ? I am sure he can afford the best private health care insurance plan, after all he is financially part of the 1 percent.

    • Between endorsements and salary, he’ll probably make close to $60m in calendar 2013. Top 1%? More like Top 0.0001%.

  • “You just can’t be a smoker and be obese or heavy … and be a basketball player. These folks are kind of the picture of youth and health, and in some ways, that’s the target audience” ….

    But you can be a heavy drug user.

    • Jefferson

      [QUOTE]“You just can’t be a smoker and be obese or heavy … and be a
      basketball player. These folks are kind of the picture of youth and
      health, and in some ways, that’s the target audience”[/QUOTE]

      So the target audience is criminals ? Because a high percentage of NBA players have a criminal record, especially when you compare it to others sports like Golf for example where very few of their athletes have a criminal record.

    • Triarius

      And have every STD known to man.

  • Truthseeker

    Charles Barkley…Oliver Miller…Stanley Roberts…John “Hot Plate” Williams…Shawn Kemp and Vin Baker at the end of their careers…Greg Ostertag…Bryant Reeves…yep. Physical specimens every one.

    • Xerxes22

      True. None of thos NBA players look healthy . They look like freaks.

  • Erasmus

    How about Obama asking Dennis Rodman to be his spokesperson?

  • The__Bobster

    “You just can’t be a smoker and be obese or heavy … and be a basketball player. These folks are kind of the picture of youth and health, and in some ways, that’s the target audience,” said Jon Kingsdale, appointed by then-Gov. Mitt Romney in 2006 to oversee the implementation of the Massachusetts health law—which got a big messaging boost from the Boston Red Sox.
    _________

    IOW, the kind of people who never had to pay for health insurance before but now will be forced to. Yeah, that’ll go over big, LeBoon James or not.

  • bigone4u

    I could give a rat’s rear end about pro sports of any kind. If anyone is stupid enough to follow azzlete’s endorsements then they deserve whatever rip off they’re lured into.

    • DiversityIsDeath

      affalete

  • I get all my medical advice from LeBron James! He is better than any doctor.

  • blight14

    I’ll state it in no uncertain terms, ANY white person that funds/watched/worships these cretins is a fool, period.

    • CoweringCoward

      If pro sports had to rely on my ilk for sustenance, none would play that didn’t just “love the game”. Grown men getting paid millions of dollars to play little kids games and still they act like a$$hole$!

  • WhiteGayMale

    I can picture this leading to Obamacare becoming known as the health care plan for blacks. If that happens, then it’s truly destined to fail.

  • I suspect this means that the Mulatto House counts the NBA among its few remaining allies.

  • What happens if I still say “No”?

    I’m not going to jail again except for killing cops. Is it worth anyone’s life to enforce Oogaboogacare laws?

    I don’t believe it for a minute.

    Think about it; even Chinese could do this to their own cops.