It's fascinating how this is a new development to the New York Times. I can't remember where I read this analogy, but it's the best I've seen: Obamacare requires people who can't afford first class to pay first class prices for coach so complete strangers can fly in coach too. For all its failings, the worst features of Obamacare were fully intended and that's why it's become so unpopular.
Prior redistributionist practices of liberals have been more in the abstract to Americans. Some didn't know it was happening at all and those who did didn't really think about it. Yes, you knew you were paying for entitlement programs that benefit others, but it wasn't personal. Health care is as personal as it gets. And as the NYT points out, the cutoff line is unforgiving for the middle class. A few thousand dollars makes the difference between whether some who is considered a "have" can afford health insurance. And their hardship benefits someone who makes just slightly less.
This is why Democrats should be terrified of November.