As President Obama signed up for coverage under the health care law that represents his signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act was going through some tough times. With approval ratings hitting new lows and a key deadline for enrollment being pushed back, 2013 came crashing to an end.
Of course, getting this far wasn’t easy. TIME looked back at the four years since the Senate passed the bill on Christmas Eve 2009, including repeal bills and threats of lawsuits before the law was even passed.
A far cry from the cheers that accompanied its passing in both houses, Republicans are now threatening to use the law as a cudgel to beat Democrats in the 2014 elections, and one Democrat in particular is fearful it may work.