“Obamacare Architect” Refuses to Tell the Truth

December 10, 2014

 
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Yesterday, Jonathan Gruber was on the hot seat. His videotaped comments discussing “the stupidity of the American voter” have caused a firestorm nationwide. Yesterday, he testified for a U.S. House hearing called, “Examining Obamacare Transparency Failures.” I called it the grilling of Gruber.

 
 
I took a screenshot of Mr. Gruber taking an oath to tell the Committee the whole truth…but it went downhill from there.
 
Although videos show Mr. Gruber telling attendees at various conferences the truth about how the law was written to deceive the American people, Mr. Gruber again and again and again told Members of the U.S. House Oversight and Government Reform committee that he had been merely “conjecturing outside the area of his expertise.” Gruber also continually refused to agree to supply the Members with data, instead telling the Committee to “discuss it with my counsel.”
 
He apologized for his offensive comments about American voters, but he’s probably only sorry the comments were discovered. His apology now is likely just an attempt to save Obamacare from Congress, unhappy Americans, and the U.S. Supreme Court.
 
Even the Democrats went after him. Congressman Elijah Cummings (D-MD) said Gruber’s comments were “absolutely stupid,” but said the worst things about Gruber’s videotaped comments was that it gave Republicans a “public relations gift” to tear down Obamacare.
 
Check out my tweets of the hearing, including key comments from Gruber, Marilyn Tavenner, the less than forthright Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and Members. Here are a few quotes in no particular order. Find more at www.twitter.com/twilabrase:
 
  • “I made glib, thoughtless and downright insulting comments” – Gruber
  • “Are you stupid?” – Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) to Gruber
  • “I don’t agree with [Supreme Court’s] conclusion about the mandate.” – Gruber
  • “Who owns those documents? Who paid for them?” – U.S. Rep Chaffetz (R-Utah), incoming Chair of the Committee.
  • “I’m not sure.” – Gruber to Chaffetz
  • “It’s a very clear reading of the law that subsidies should be available to all citizens.” – Gruber to U.S. Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R-TN)
  • “It’s not clear.” – DesJarlais who pointed to the King vs Burwell subsidy lawsuit to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court next year.
  • “I’m not a political advisor and I have no answer to that question,” – Gruber on why Obama said 37 times if you like your plan, you can keep it.
  • “It was inexcusable that I tried to appear smarter by insulting others.” – Gruber
  • “They were not lies.” – Gruber on his comments on the videos.
  • “My colleagues are upset with you simply because you committed candor.” – Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY) to Gruber about Committee Democrats.
  • "I don't recall exactly what the law says." – Gruber to Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) regarding citizen access to premium subsidies.
  • "You ran the economic model on Obamacare and you don't recall what the law says?" – Rep. Amash
  • “It was a lie today or in 2012. Which was a lie?” – U.S. Rep. Tom Rice (R-SC)
  • “In 2012, I was trying to play amateur politician.” – Gruber to Rice.
  • “The Affordable Care Act was passed as a pack of lies on a foundation of deception.” – Congressman Rice
 
The so-called #Grubergate hearing is over, but the real showdown on Obamacare is just getting started. What will the new Congress do? Will they subpoena Gruber for income and other data he refused to share? Will they move to repeal Obamacare as even Democrats begin to worry about its impact on 2016 elections? (see revealing Quote of the Week below) Stay tuned.
 
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Exposing the truth about Obamacare to speed its repeal,
 

Twila Brase, RN, PHN

President and Co-founder