Rhetorical Analysis (Revised)

Rhetorical Analysis on the article, “Why Undoing Obamacare Will Be So Hard”


Steven Rattner, an American financier who served as lead advisor to the presidential task force on the auto industry in 2009 for the Obama administration, in his article “Why Undoing Obamacare Will Be So Hard published by The New York Times in 2017, Steven Rattner starts to explain why Obamacare has become embedded in Americans’ life and why it is so difficult for Americans to accept a replacement for Obamacare. According to Rattner, Obamacare “has driven the percentage of Americans without insurance down to 9% by a considerable margin the lowest in history.” He talks about how the new replacement might get millions of Americans uninsured. Rattner also mentioned how Obamacare helped teens to get coverage under their parent’s health plan, which turn out to be the reason why most Americans wanted to preserve the A.C.A (Affordable Care Act) and not dismantle it. Rattner think since there are so many people depended on Obamacare, Republicans must replace it with something that benefits the people.


According to our new president, Donald Trump, the Affordable Care Act will get repealed and replaced because Trump thinks A.C.A is a disaster and it won’t be able to fix the healthcare system that we have now. Rattner argues that replacing the Obamacare will get millions of Americans uninsured because the new replacement for Obamacare has a lot of factors that would influence American’s chance of getting covered by the new health care act. The author applies the ethos, logos and pathos effectively to appeal to readers’ emotions and make the article much more persuasive by using the statistics that is providing and referring to other people’s perspective has strengthened his argument and make the argument more trustworthy.


The lack of sufficient evidence or quality reasoning would only make an argument invalid and fail to persuade his audiences. In the article, Steven Rattner uses sufficient evidence like statistics, graphs, and charts to prove his claims. He appeals to logos through presenting reasoning and logical facts. One of the examples that Rattner provided is, “According to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, Medicaid expansion and exchange subsidies will cost $2 trillion over the next 10 years. … However, about $1 trillion — roughly half — of these costs are being paid for by a variety of taxes and fees that the Republicans want to repeal, provisions like the 3.8 percent levy on investment income, the 0.9 percent surtax on Medicare hospital insurance, penalties on individual who do not buy coverage and so forth” Rattner did a great job at presenting his example and this quote illustrated a clear image of why the Republicans wanted to get rid of Obamacare. The statistics has proven the fact that undoing our current healthcare system will be difficult, because it involved with the distribution of the taxes that we have gathered from the people.


The way that Rattner made his piece appeals to emotions is by explaining how the new healthcare replacement would affect millions of Americans. Obamacare is so beneficial because of subsidies that is determined by our income being provided within Obamacare. He stated, “The Republican proposal would have the tax credits be a function of age, a regressive approach that would leave many poorer Americans less well off and result in millions losing insurance.” This quote is a quality source that explain why changing the current system would affect people within all age group, he also uses big number to demonstrate the consequence of repealing the healthcare system, which helps generate fear and shock the readers. He thinks that the new replacement might be something that isn’t beneficial to the low-income, but turns out to providing coverage for the rich, instead of the poor.


Rattner made his piece trustworthy by using strong sources and other people’s point of view to help strengthen his credibility. And due to his authority as a financial advisor working under Obama’s administration, which make his paper more reliable. Rattner use words from John Boehner to strengthen his credentials, “Even former Speaker John Boehner said Thursday that a full repeal and replace of Obamacare is “not what’s going to happen” and that the Republicans will instead just make some fixes to the health care law “and put a more conservative box around it.”” Beside Rattner’s authority being a financial advisor, he also refers to what other people think about the topic and these opinions turned out to be strong and quality evidence that will make his argument much more persuasive by building up its reliability.


Steven Ratter’s article seems just based off his personal opinions just by going through the first few paragraphs. He then started to strengthen his argument and build credibility through the appeals of logos, pathos, and the use of ethos, and they are being used effectively appeals to the reader’s emotions and make the article much more persuasive based on the statistics that are provided, and referring to other people’s perspective has strengthened his argument and make it more trustworthy. He also explains how harmful it is to get rid of Obamacare, why it is impossible to replace it with something good, and persuade his readers that replacing Obamacare would never benefit them in either way.

Work Cited:

1. Rattner, Steven . “Why Undoing Obamacare Will Be So Hard.” The New York Times, 24 Feb. 2017. Web. 3 Mar. 2017.