Plouffe: GOP will "regret" branding health care "Obamacare"

David Plouffe, who served as President Obama's campaign manager in the 2008 election, is joining the White House staff to serve as an adviser to the president. Plouffe is largely expected to eventually fill the shoes of David Axelrod -- who is leaving the White House later this year. Plouffe spent the past two years working as a senior adviser for AKPD, the Chicago-based political-consulting group that Axelrod founded. Photo by Francois Durand/Getty Images

David Plouffe.
Photo by Francois Durand/Getty Images
(CBS News) Senior White House adviser David Plouffe said Sunday that the White House is "confident" its health care overhaul will be upheld as constitutional by the Supreme Court - and that, ultimately, Republicans are going to regret having branded it "Obamacare."

The Supreme Court will hear arguments this week over the Obama administration's landmark Affordable Care Act, which celebrated its two-year anniversary last week.

"You've seen jurists appointed by both Democrats and Republicans in lower courts that uphold this law. Two very important conservative jurists offering very strong opinions. We're confident it will be [held] constitutional," Plouffe said on "Fox News Sunday."

"And our focus right now, obviously, there's going to be a process play out this week, and the Supreme Court will deliberate. We're going to continue to make sure we implement this law smartly and that we inform people of the benefits that are available to them."

Plouffe suggested that the Republican moniker for the health care overhaul - "Obamacare" - will hurt the party in the end, the implication being that the law will be upheld and eventually become widely popular.

"I'm convinced at the end of the decade, the Republicans are going to regret turning this [into] 'Obamacare,'" he said. "Most of the law doesn't take effect until 2014. But important parts are getting implemented right now. Two and half million people between the ages of 21 and 26 have health care only because of the health care law. Over 5 million seniors are getting over $600 in prescriptions drug relief.

"So for people who are experiencing it - and it's a small portion of the population right now - I think they are seeing it quite differently than was advertised [by the Republicans]," Plouffe added.

As the Supreme Court gears up to hear arguments on the controversial health care law, President Obama's re-election campaign has embraced the term "Obamacare," which Republicans coined in 2010 as a derisive smear.

In an e-mail to supporters on Friday, top Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod wrote, "Hell, yeah, I'm for Obamacare."

Stephanie Cutter, deputy campaign manager for Obama for America, followed up Axelrod's email with her own note: "Republicans have now spent millions on nasty TV ads that try to tear down health reform," Cutter wrote Saturday in a separate email to supporters. "They even assigned the law a moniker that they intended to be a dirty word: Obamacare. Well, we just so happen to love the name. Thanks, guys."

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