Planned Parenthood has dispatched hundreds of workers across the country to sign up the uninsured for Obamacare.
According to a report in The New York Times, the abortion-providing giant is paying about 400 workers $12 an hour to canvass and sign people up for the president’s signature healthcare law.
The workers are approaching an average 18,000 doors a day in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas.
The Times explains that the movement to sign people up for Obamacare plans has taken the same kind of shape as the Obama presidential campaign turn-out effort: micro-targeting the uninsured. Enroll America, the group leading the effort to enroll people in Obamacare, generated lists of people, ranking their likelihood of needing insurance.
The report looks at several Planned Parenthood workers’ efforts to sign people up before the March 31 enrollment deadline and some of there struggles, including the website.
After more than an hour canvassing Hollywood [Florida] for Planned Parenthood, Alberonick Valsaint, 42, had yet to sign up anyone for health insurance. But then he approached a small three-room house where Yersson Llabreras, 35, was putting on his McDonald’s uniform and getting ready for work.
Mr. Llabreras said that his 9-year-old son was asthmatic and that he had tried in vain late last year to sign up for coverage on the government’s health care website. “For real, we need it,” he said.
So for more than half an hour, Mr. Valsaint walked Mr. Llabreras through the process of creating an account on HealthCare.gov so he could select an insurance plan. When Mr. Llabreras had to leave for his job, Mr. Valsaint continued with Mr. Llabreras’s wife, Diana Camacho, who took a break from “Caso Cerrado,” a popular Spanish-language show similar to “The People’s Court.” The family of four is now on its way to getting health insurance.
The day before, Ms. [Nancy] Morwin, the canvasser for Planned Parenthood, met Francisco Padilla, 42, in a mobile home park. Mr. Padilla’s job as a forklift mechanic pays $375 a week but does not offer health insurance. Married with three children, Mr. Padilla had tried to sign up on HealthCare.gov, with no success.
“They told me I qualify for Medicaid, but I’ve been trying, trying, trying, nothing,” he told Ms. Morwin, who took his name and telephone number and promised that someone from Planned Parenthood would follow up.
By the end of her shift, Ms. Morwin had knocked on 115 doors and talked to 16 people about enrolling. Not one of them signed up.
In some cases, problems with the health care website are still frustrating the canvassers’ best efforts.
Ryanbo Morales, 27, a Planned Parenthood worker and a former campaign volunteer for Mr. Obama, searched for the uninsured one recent day with the same zeal he brought to looking for voters during the president’s 2012 re-election campaign. But when he finally found Chrystal Rhodes, 24, who said she did not work enough hours at JetBlue to qualify for its health insurance, his efforts to help her sign up on his Samsung tablet were stymied when she kept getting an enrollment error.
“This is really unfortunate,” Mr. Morales said.
The Obama administration had aimed to have seven million people signed up for Obamacare by the end of open enrollment. By the end of January, only 3.3 million had enrolled.