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LeBron James becomes Obamacare pitchman

Mar 14, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT

President Obama has ramped up his efforts to promote the Affordable Care Act, even appearing on “Between Two Ferns” with Zach Galifianakis.

With only mild offense intended for Galifianakis (in the spirit of his episode with the president), Obama has enlisted a much bigger celebrity to help with the cause – LeBron James.

In the 30-second spot above, LeBron straightforwardly encourages viewers to sign up at HealthCare.gov.

It’s certainly a political statement in an era where most athletes follow Michael Jordan’s lead and avoid those in order to protect their endorsements. LeBron, via Ethan Skolnick of Bleacher Report:

“I mean, I can’t worry about that,” James said. “Especially who I am. I mean, I know that everything that I do is going to be bigger than what it should be or blown out of proportion. But what I believe in and the people that I support is what it’s all about. So I can sleep comfortably at night.”

“I know that everything that I do is going to be bigger than what it should be or blown out of proportion.” I think that’s what Obama is counting on.

  1. WillIEverSeeACupInMyLife? - Mar 14, 2014 at 10:14 AM

    “LeBron straightforwardly encourages viewers to sign up at HealthCare.gov.”

    If that’s so, give up your healthcare and sign up LeBron……

    • Professor Fate - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:22 AM

      Yeah, because a really rich guy needs help to afford the wildly overpriced American “health care” system.

      • beach305 - Mar 14, 2014 at 1:57 PM

        Actually, I’m self employed and I couldn’t get coverage other than for cheap discount insurance that had high deductibles and caps. Now thanks to the ACA I actually have health coverage for the fist time in 20 years.

      • brmorgen82 - Mar 14, 2014 at 3:39 PM

        You’re self employed? What’s your monthly payment and deductible for your life saving Obamacare plan that you couldn’t have bought before the ACA? Is you plan being subsidized?

    • pfic15 - Mar 14, 2014 at 2:12 PM

      No. That’s for the little people.

    • kylecleric - Mar 14, 2014 at 5:39 PM

      He can’t. He has to get his health coverage through the NBA.

    • Kevin S. - Mar 14, 2014 at 5:52 PM

      It’s almost like the exchanges were designee for people who *couldn’t* get healthcare through their employer.

  2. timberwolvesbrisin - Mar 14, 2014 at 10:16 AM

    So a multimulti millionaire tells us to sign up, while Obama encourages Americans to “drop their cellpone and cable bill.” Uuuum yah

  3. mike0987 - Mar 14, 2014 at 10:26 AM

    baaaaa baaaaa …so many sheep

  4. thomaskouns - Mar 14, 2014 at 10:33 AM

    At least he’s willing to take criticism to stand up for his convictions unlike most Superstars who straddle the fence so ‘everyone likes them’ and so they buy their sneakers.

    • metalhead65 - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:17 AM

      if he is standing up for his convictions that means he is giving up the healthcare plan he has and is signing himself and family up with obama care right?

      • miamatt - Mar 14, 2014 at 12:02 PM

        Where on earth do you get that interpretation? If you have good health insurance already, you have no reason to visit that site and sign up for anything.

      • metalhead65 - Mar 14, 2014 at 1:42 PM

        maybe because it is the law? unless you live under a rock millions of people who are not rich or exempted politicians like his good buddy obummer have lost their plans or seen thier rates sky rocket because of obama care.

      • kylecleric - Mar 14, 2014 at 5:42 PM

        Actually, the law is the exact opposite of as you stated.

      • metalhead65 - Mar 15, 2014 at 5:47 PM

        spare me your tree hugging liberal views and look at the facts. and they are facts whether you choose to believe them or not. how did that if you like your dr. you can keep him promise work out? fact is if you do not have a job you are not covered so what was the point of the stupid law to begin? costs are up not down. and if this such a great law thenobama and lebronand anyone who supports itor had a hand in making and passing it should be enrolled in it. none of this do as I say not as I do b.s.

  5. asimonetti88 - Mar 14, 2014 at 10:34 AM

    Is healthcare.gov working yet?

    • brmorgen82 - Mar 14, 2014 at 3:34 PM

      No. The back end software (the software which actually processes the payments) is still being developed. That’s why they don’t know how many people actually have PAID for Obamacare, they just give a bogus number of “who selected a health plan.” Or they know how many have signed up and haven’t paid and are too embarrassed to say. Despicable lies that braindead zombie liberals just eat up.

    • sw19womble - Mar 14, 2014 at 4:10 PM

      Yep. Has been for a while – which you’d know if you didn’t spend your time getting your news from FOX :)

      Oh, wait, I see what you were trying to do now.

      • asimonetti88 - Mar 16, 2014 at 2:02 PM

        Actually, I’m not a Republican and I don’t watch FOX, I get my news from Al-Jazeera, easily the most objective news source.

    • kylecleric - Mar 14, 2014 at 5:40 PM

      Yup. Perfectly.

  6. southstands1 - Mar 14, 2014 at 10:34 AM

    “If you like your plan, you can keep your plan.”

    • brmorgen82 - Mar 14, 2014 at 3:35 PM

      “If you like you doctor, you can keep your doctor. period.”

      Today: “For the average person, many folks who don’t have health insurance initially, they’re going to have to make some choices. And they might end up having to switch doctors, in part because they’re saving money.”

    • kylecleric - Mar 14, 2014 at 5:43 PM

      True.

      • kylecleric - Mar 14, 2014 at 5:43 PM

        Through 2016

      • asimonetti88 - Mar 14, 2014 at 7:12 PM

        False. I lost my plan.

  7. sasquash20 - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:02 AM

    I kept my plan. I got no issues at all. I think many people are missing the point. You should go bankrupt because you get sick. I don’t know all the details about Obamacare, but I do think universal health care is a good thing. Insurance companies print money and deny people with legitimate claims all the time in hopes that they will just pay it. Not saying Obama is right but at least he has us headed in the right direction when it comes to health care for all.

    • sasquash20 - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:03 AM

      Meant you shouldn’t go broke. Not you should go broke.

    • asimonetti88 - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:51 AM

      “I don’t know all the details about Obamacare, but I do think universal health care is a good thing.”

      The ACA is not universal health care, or anything even near it.

      “Insurance companies print money”

      Well then let’s force everyone to buy insurance from them.

    • miamatt - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:59 AM

      You are on the money. My mother caught swine flu a few years back, went into a coma, and nearly died. Through the work of some great doctors -and the white house signing off to allow them to try an experimental, non-US approved drug- she recovered in miraculous fashion. The bill was over $500,000. For reasons unknown to us -I suspect a researcher used her as a case study- the hospital eventually waived the bill completely. If not for that, my parents -both working professionals- would have had to declare bankruptcy as they are nearing retirement age.

      I don’t know how to solve the problems in the health care industry in the US, but your larger point is correct- catastrophic injury or illness should not cause people to go bankrupt. It’s not all “leaches” who don’t work and don’t want to pay for insurance, we are talking about working class people who get stuck with bills they could never in 100 years repay.

      • sumkat - Mar 15, 2014 at 3:37 AM

        America had the best health care system in the history of the planet, period. There is a reason anybody in the world that could afford it came to America to see doctors, because they were the best

        Now we will have a system full of doctors assistants and nurses don’t what doctors should be doing. meanwhile, most top doctors and hospitals area already saying they won’t accept it.

        It’s just another income redistribution scam. She had 500k in bills, that is truly horrible, but A, she could of got better insurance, my plan, that would of cost me about 5k. B, either way, what would you rather have, a 500k bill and your mother alive, or much more affordable health care, and be visiting her grave? Because that’s what happens if you go into a coma due to swine flu just about anywhere else in the world

      • Kurt Helin - Mar 15, 2014 at 12:46 PM

        If you think the shift away from seeing doctors to seeing nurse practitioners and the like is tied to Obamacare you were not paying attention, that shift has been going on for decades. It’s about the business model.

      • sumkat - Mar 15, 2014 at 1:57 PM

        Not at my doctor

        Maybe under welfare insurance that nobody wants to accept because they pay out .15 on the dollar

        Stay out of politics, you are already overmatched trying to write up blogs about the nba

    • sumkat - Mar 15, 2014 at 3:31 AM

      There is no universal health care

      Even if the POTUS’s number are correct (they aren’t, or they would tell us how many people paid, and how many weren’t insured before. If you believe they “can’t get” those number, there is no point in having a rational conversation with you), there are still less people signed up for Obamacare than lost their insurance because of Obamacare

      There is a reason he keeps pushing back the mandates (illegally), because once they kick in, it will be a complete disaster for the economy. Rich didn’t get or stay rich by paying more. They pay their people less, and charge more. They still get their money. If they aren’t they close the business.

  8. metalhead65 - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:26 AM

    I guess lebron really loves to be hated if he is prmoting this god awful plan. unless he and his good buddy obummer are willing to put their money where their mouths are and drop the plans they have now and enroll in it then he just gave me another reason not to like him.

    • miamatt - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:49 AM

      I guess listening comprehension isn’t your strong suit. The ad is clearly aimed at the millions of Americans who are currently uninsured. Nobody is suggesting that somebody should drop their awesome employer-provided health care. The problem is that many people work jobs that cut them just short of full time so they don’t have to provide health coverage.

      • brmorgen82 - Mar 14, 2014 at 3:43 PM

        90% of the “signups” (a liberal lie) or from people who ALREADY HAD HEALTH INSURANCE. You know nothing about the ACA.

  9. Professor Fate - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:28 AM

    Although I’ve never disliked James (except for that overblown “taking my skills to Southbeach” crap), something like this raises my respect for him. He has more than enough money to be self-insured and pay whatever it takes to stay healthy, yet he sees the need for a healthcare system that doesn’t bankrupt people the moment they get something worse than the flu.

    The U.S. has a “system” that enriches private companies on the backs of working people and James sees that it needs to change. Good for him for not taking the Bill O’Reilly route and wondering why other people can’t shell out $400,000 when they need life-saving healthcare. You can call it socialism or liberal entitlement or whatever talking point Fox News has provided you, but then you may also think air should be a for-profit enterprise.

    • brmorgen82 - Mar 14, 2014 at 3:38 PM

      “The U.S. has a “system” that enriches private companies on the backs of working people and James sees that it needs to change”

      Obamacare encourages the entire U.S. population to join this “system” through healthcare.gov.

      You are not very bright at all, and I feel vindicated to be fighting for the welfare of our country against braindead zombies like you.

      • Kurt Helin - Mar 15, 2014 at 1:03 PM

        For the record, you do realize that the idea of insurance exchanges came out of Republican think tanks as a response to what Hillary Clinton proposed for health care changes back during her husband’s administration. What is frustrating to most of us is that rather than having any rational discussion about an issue that needs a serious discussion both sides of the isle try to demonize the other to gain a political advantage and gain power.

      • sumkat - Mar 15, 2014 at 2:01 PM

        Kurt, I had an idea what I could step in front of bus, and I would win. Then I realized it was a bad idea

        Gotta love liberals, they come up with ridiculous things, then say “hey, 20 years ago you mentioned something slightly similar to this, so technically it was YOUR idea”.

        What frustrates me, are liberals who slam through a law that changes the entire country on a purely party vote, then illegally change that law dozens of times when everything the Republicans said would happen, actually happened

      • Kurt Helin - Mar 15, 2014 at 2:06 PM

        When I said in my comment this nation needed a rational discussion of the issue rather than making it a partisan fight, that comment is exactly what I meant is wrong. It’s about one side winning or losing rather than a measured discussion of what works. Both sides of the isle do this all the time. That combined with gerrymandered districts where Dems/Reps can’t really ever get voted out of house offices leads to a polarized debate that is not really a debate at all.

    • martinez661 - Mar 15, 2014 at 3:36 PM

      what obamacare does is enrich the insurance corporation who will be lobbying for a democrat re-election. It does not matter who runs for the elections I will not vote for any democrat due to obamacare. Instead of making healthcare more affordable for anyone who CHOOSES to purchase health care, obama demands people to purchase them at a premium prices for someone who does not need them. Screw that, I will not sign up for this on my own will. Obama has friends on the insurance company.

  10. eagles512 - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:32 AM

    Obamacare=complete disaster

  11. styx630 - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:38 AM

    People still think “Obummer” is clever, huh?

  12. lastdukestreetking - Mar 14, 2014 at 11:49 AM

    Good for LeBron! From some of the comments here, it’s clear that many have no idea how the ACA works.

    • brmorgen82 - Mar 14, 2014 at 3:30 PM

      So you’ve read the entire law, which is 7x longer than the bible, and know how it works then? You’re a joke. Why don’t you check out the Obamacare enforcement regulations (how to enforce this god awful law), which are 21x longer than the bible. You’re a joke.

  13. norcalkingsfan - Mar 14, 2014 at 12:36 PM

    Lebron, the guy who has never had a real job, or gone to college.

    • csbanter - Mar 14, 2014 at 12:51 PM

      Lebron has a great job playing in the NBA, u mad bro ?

  14. miamiheatles - Mar 14, 2014 at 1:00 PM

    5 years from now when Obama care is popular, people will “all of a sudden” call it HealthCare so Obama doesn’t get any credit.

  15. clesportsfan - Mar 14, 2014 at 1:47 PM

    Repeal ObamaCare and Repeal Lebron

    • asimonetti88 - Mar 14, 2014 at 7:13 PM

      And Free Tibet!

  16. andreboy1 - Mar 14, 2014 at 2:27 PM

    If you make minimum wage you can’t afford ObamaCare. It’s a shame that he calls it “affordable”.

    • kylecleric - Mar 14, 2014 at 5:52 PM

      Actually, you should be able to easily afford ObamaCare if you make minimum wage. You should either be covered under medicaid or your employers medical plan.

  17. electstat - Mar 14, 2014 at 3:16 PM

    Maybe he can get lenses for his frames now. Swag does not = mocking disabilities.

  18. brmorgen82 - Mar 14, 2014 at 3:28 PM

    The Affordable Care Act’s text is 7x longer than the bible. The enforcement regulations (the rules written to enforce Obamacare ) are 21x longer than the bible. Obama has never read the bill, neither has anyone else. Hence the lies “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor, period”, which he admitted was a lie today, saying “For the average person, many folks who don’t have health insurance initially, they’re going to have to make some choices. And they might end up having to switch doctors, in part because they’re saving money.” Oregon spent $300 million on a website which hasn’t signed up a single person. They could have fed every poor kid in the state for that kind of waste. Luckily Obama has plenty of braindead zombies shilling for him, including megarich NBA stars and invalid probasketballtalk comments who don’t know the first thing about the health insurance market or the ACA. God help this country.

  19. antistratfordian - Mar 14, 2014 at 4:43 PM

    Awesome.

  20. kylecleric - Mar 14, 2014 at 5:53 PM

    Good for Lebron.

  21. martinez661 - Mar 15, 2014 at 11:40 AM

    That’s it, I hope clippers win the championship this year just because of this. Obamacare should not exist here… I hate obamacare so much that now I detest lebron for doing this commercial, I didn’t care how he left cleveland but this is something else.

  22. kinglorious - Mar 16, 2014 at 4:06 AM

    ‘Murica Issues.

  23. daubs17 - Mar 16, 2014 at 6:31 PM

    yayy i have a menial or no job as a 45 year old adult and its everyone else’s fault!! pay for my health care!! vote obama!!

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