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Obama’s army of supporters to man the trenches in new health care push

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Enroll America, the nonprofit that is leading the charge in promoting President Obama's health care law, announced on Tuesday it has launched a nationwide campaign to help the uninsured learn about benefits and subsidies that take effect next year.

The "Get Covered America" campaign will host more than 50 events in 18 states this week, including strategy sessions, door-to-door canvassing and other public events, the organization said.

The campaign comes less than four months before qualifying Americans without employer-based insurance can begin to shop for health plans on state-based "exchanges." Enrollment in the virtual markets begins Oct. 1, for coverage that takes effect on Jan. 1.

Also in January, numerous states will also extend Medicaid benefits to those making up to 138 percent of the poverty level.

With key dates looming, Republicans in Congress continue to batter Mr. Obama's reforms as misguided and dangerous for the country. They say mandates on individuals and employers will lead to job losses and hurt an already weak economy.

The law's supporters acknowledge that many Americans do not know how Mr. Obama's overhaul will affect them. A survey by Enroll America found nearly 80 percent of uninsured American do not know about their options under the law.

"And we know that if they don't know about it, they won't take advantage of it," said Anne Filipic, president of Enroll America and a former Obama aide.

Enroll America said it is looking for volunteers to join its grassroots campaign and will launch a website, social media feeds and paid advertisements as part of their effort.

The group has been a target of controversy after Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius acknowledged soliciting private groups to donate to Enroll America's campaign.

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