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Jonathan Gruber in 2013: Obama Should Have Been 'Vaguer' When He Promised Americans They Would Be Able to Keep Their Health Insurance


"...and that's largely because they're in crappy insurance that doesn't really protect them."

Image source: YouTube

Yet another video has surfaced showing MIT professor and Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber making a few questionable comments about President Barack Obama's signature health care law.

Gruber claims in the newly unearthed video that Obama should have been "vaguer" when he promised Americans with health insurance plans that they would be able to keep their health insurance plans.

Image source: YouTube Image source: YouTube

MSNBC's Chris Matthews, on whose show Gruber was appearing with Rep. Gwen Moore (D-Wis.) Oct. 31, 2013, said the president's "problems" were that he repeatedly told Americans if they had a health insurance policy they liked, they wouldn't need to buy a new one.

As millions of otherwise satisfied consumers later found out, that wasn't entirely true. Matthews acknowledged:

"Now they're being told by their insurance companies that those policies aren't going to exist anymore. What do you think was wrong – if you did think anything was wrong – in the way the president sold the idea that you'd be held harmless, you'd be left alone with no paperwork or whatever if you had a good policy?"

Gruber responded by saying that the president should have made a somewhat "vaguer" statement about Americans with health insurance being able to keep their health insurance. He also pointed out that the number of people the president was referring to when he repeatedly made that promise – "if you like your health insurance plan you can keep your health insurance plan" – was only about 5 to 6 percent of Americans who bought their insurance on the individual market and not through their employer or the government.

Those several percent who were forced to buy new plans, Gruber said, would be able to replicate the plan they had before with a similar plan, adding that the name of the plan might be different or the deductible could change a little bit, but overall, those people would be able to purchase essentially the same plans as the ones they had before.

"It's a very small slice of Americans who will literally have to change their insurance plan and that's largely because they're in crappy insurance that doesn't really protect them from real financial risk," Gruber continued, "so that's why we're asking them to go buy real insurance."

Those comments surfaced just days after another explosive video was uncovered. In that clip, Gruber described the process by which Obamacare was passed. The "lack of transparency" in the way the law was written and marketed, Gruber claimed, was a huge "political advantage" for the Democrats that could have made all the difference in the health care debate.

“Call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really really critical for the thing to pass," he said.

Gruber went on to say it was better for the American people to be saddled with a law they didn't understand than to understand the law and rally against it: “Look, I wish … we could make it all transparent, but I’d rather have this law than not,” he concluded.

Follow Jon Street (@JonStreet) on Twitter

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