Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) on Tuesday rejected Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber's claim that he made disparaging claims about the intelligence of American voters in order to make himself look smarter.
Gruber spent hours in front of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee apologizing for and explaining away his various comments that were caught on video, including when he said Obamacare was able to pass because of the "stupidity of the American voter."
Gruber said a few times that he shouldn't have spoken about politician matters at all, since he's not an expert. But Gowdy said Gruber seemed to routinely speak about politics, and dismissed that answer. "Is that the best you can come up with?" he said.
Gruber then said repeatedly that he spoke disparagingly about the American voters in an attempt to sound smarter than he really was.
"Once again, it was my trying to conjecture about a political process in which I'm not an expert," he said. "Once again, it was using inappropriate language to try to sound impressive about something to my colleagues."
Gowdy finally had enough, and asked a question that seemed to reveal that Gruber's answers may not be the real reason why he said all those things.
"So you're a professor at MIT and you're worried about not looking smart enough?" Gowdy asked.
After a long pause, Gruber finally said, "Yes."
"Well, you succeeded if that was your goal," Gowdy said.
Gruber also said throughout the day that he was sorry he said what he said. But Gowdy said to his eyes, it looked like Gruber was only sorry because his comments were caught on video.
"Professor Gruber, let me just say what it looks like from this vantage point," he said. "You thought that they were really pithy and really funny, until the video showed up."
"Which one are you apologizing for? Because you said it, or because you meant it?" Gowdy pressed.
"I didn't mean it," Gruber said.
"All of these quotes that I just read to you, you didn't read a single one, not a one?"
Earlier in the hearing, Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) asked Gruber if he was "stupid." Gruber said he was not, but Gowdy and others said Gruber said many stupid things on the videos that leaked out over the last few months.
"Do you see a trend developing here, Professor Gruber?" Howdy asked at one point.
"I don't understand the question," Gruber said.
"It's a lot of stupid quotes you've made, that's the trend."