It sounded like a new twist on an old promise as Obamacare architect Zeke Emanuel was pushed to answer what Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace insisted was a simple question:
“President Obama famously promised, if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. Doesn’t that turn out to be just as false, just as misleading, as his promise about if you like your plan, you can keep your plan?”
Emanuel tried heading toward after-the-fact nuances, but Wallace wouldn’t let go: “It’s a simple yes or no question. Did he say if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor?”
“Yes,” Emanuel finally admitted before quickly turning another corner. “But look, if you want to pay more for an insurance company that covers your doctor, you can do that. This is a matter of choice.”
Which Wallace jumped on, soon forcing Emanuel to admit that Americans under Obamacare “are going to have a choice as to whether they want to pay a certain amount for a selective network or pay more for a broader network.”
And that led to the key admission in the following segment of the interview:
“Which will mean your premiums will probably go up,” Wallace noted.
“They get that choice,” Emanuel said. “That’s a choice they always made.”
“Which means your premium may go up over what you were paying so that, in other words — ”
“No one guaranteed you that your premium wouldn’t increase,” Emanuel added. “Premiums have been going up.”
“The president guaranteed me I could keep my doctor,” said Wallace.
“And if you want to, you can pay for it,” said Emanuel.
Related: Earlier in the interview, Wallace asked Emanuel, “Isn’t it a fact, sir, that a number, most, in fact, of the Obamacare health plans that are being offered on the exchanges exclude a number of doctors and hospitals to lower costs?”
Emanuel didn’t go into details, but a Financial Times piece does, reporting Sunday that top hospitals in several states will be excluded from Obamacare (e.g., Memorial Sloan Kettering in Manhattan or MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, which are top cancer facilities, as well as Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles, which is a leading research and teaching hospital in the U.S.).
Here’s the Fox News Sunday clip:
(H/T: Drudge Report)