Posted By RichC on November 15, 2014
Some of the political hot-potato news this past week was related to self described “off the cuff” comments from MIT’s Jonathan Gruber a respected health economist. He helped craft President Obama’s health care law and was captured on video commenting about the “stupidity of the American voter” and suggesting the law was passed dishonestly (NYTimes). Democrats have been scrambling to distance themselves from Gruber, while the GOP (video above) and right wing blogs relish in the added fodder after their huge win early this month.
The key to passing the Affordable Health Care Act (Obamacare) was to prevent the Congressional Budget Office from scoring the "spending" as federal taxes. Key to "selling" it to the public was to give Americans options as to how to obtain and finance health care coverage. Just as the government requires a business to install/pay for "government compliant" handicap access ramps without a "scored tax" by the C.B.O., Obamacare would mandate specific healthcare coverage to be purchased by all and require both businesses and individuals to aquire it on their own, or be subject to penalty.
Referring to the Congressional Budget Office, Mr. Gruber said in an academic panel discussion last year (a tape of which surfaced this week): “This bill was written in a tortured way to make sure the C.B.O. did not score the mandate as taxes. If C.B.O. scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies.”