Congressional Republican leaders, Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and John Cornyn (R-TX), told NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in a June 27 letter that partnering with HHS on "Obamacare" could trigger a fan backlash: "Given the divisiveness and persistent unpopularity of this bill, it is difficult to understand why an organization like yours would risk damaging its inclusive and apolitical brand by lending its name to its promotion."
Talks with other sports organizations, such as the NBA, have also reportedly cooled. The President has since turned to actors and comedians, such as Amy Poehler, Jennifer Hudson, Oprah Winfrey, and others to help convince younger people to enroll in the exchanges, but again, nothing has yet been produced to promote them.
HHS is not the only entity that knows a younger, healthier mix is needed to help balance the premium pool so that the exchanges are actually affordable. Insurers and states, particularly the 16 states that are running a state-based HIX, are also aiming at the younger crowd.
Minnesota is using its iconic mascots Paul Bunyan and Babe, the blue ox, to show why signing up for health insurance through its HIX, MNsure, is a good idea. TV ads show Bunyan getting hurt doing various activities, such as water skiing, snow skiing, and playing soccer, while Babe looks on.