In one of his first official acts as president, Donald Trump set about fulfilling his promise of repealing Obamacare.
While Obamacare has been plagued with problems since practically day one — from Americans being unable to enroll in the program, to those who simply cannot afford the Affordable Care Act — the Obama administration remained committed to preserving the program, even in its final weeks.
Seeking to defend his program, Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber embarked on a fiery debate with Fox News’s Tucker Carlson on Wednesday — but ultimately conceded that fact that there were clear-cut “losers” in the controversial healthcare law.
“The law wasn’t designed to help everyone.” Yeah, obviously. It’s nice to see Tucker tear into him: https://t.co/A9MSKTKHd4
— Charles Yoder (@Cyoder80) January 26, 2017
Carlson came out firing right off the bat, asking — if Obamacare is working the way it’s supposed to — why roughly 60% of Americans are eager to see it repealed in full or in part.
Gruber, who is an economics professor at MIT, justified this low approval by saying that there’s been “a huge amount of misinformation spread about this law.”
When pressed, Gruber admitted that “this law was never supposed to help everybody,” but added:
“If you look at the people who are actually benefiting from this law, they like it.”
While that might seem like a self-fulfilling statement, Gruber was quick to argue that — given enough time — Americans would see health care costs lower under Obamacare, and essentially “fix what was wrong in our system.”
Having said that, Gruber did admit that there were some very clear “victims” of the law.
“healthcare system had winners and losers” https://t.co/d6AS5VtjVQ
— RightAlerts (@RightAlerts) January 26, 2017
Specifically, Gruber said that there were two groups of “losers”:
“One is the wealthiest Americans, the top 2% of Americans who had to pay new taxes.
And second is very healthy individuals, who have benefited from a previously discriminatory insurance market. So, before, insurers could kick sick people out… so if you’re a young, healthy person in the market, you benefitted from the fact that sick people were excluded.
Obamacare said ‘no,’ insurers have to… insure everyone. That meant for some young, healthy people, their premiums went up.”
In response, Carlson argued why Americans should be forced to pay for something that they “don’t want or need,” such as why a woman would have to pay for things like prostate care or a male impotence drug like Viagra, or why men would be charged for things such as pre-natal care or breastfeeding.
While Gruber agreed that this point is worthy of a “legitimate debate,” he stood by his assertion that “Americans just don’t understand what this law has done for them.”
Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber: People don’t understand what this law has done. – TCT # Tucker @FoxNews
— Tucker Carlson (@TuckerCarlson) January 26, 2017
In the end, it seems that Gruber is committed to preserving the legacy of Obamacare, even now that the controversial law’s namesake is out of office.
You can watch Carlson’s full interview with Gruber, below, where the two clash on everything from spouting “propaganda,” to Gruber’s argument why “Americans just don’t understand” why Obamacare is so great: