Bill Clinton Says Obama Should Honor ‘You Can Keep It’ Health Care Promise

Et tu, Bill?

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Former President Bill Clinton waded into the ongoing controversy over President Barack Obama’s troubled promise that those who like their health insurance can keep it, encouraging the president to uphold that commitment.

“I personally believe, even if it takes a change in the law the president should honor the commitment that the federal government made to those people and let them keep what they got,” Clinton, who Obama once dubbed “Secretary of Explaining Stuff,” said in an interview with OZY Media founder Carlos Watson published Tuesday.

In recent weeks Obama has been frantically trying to extricate himself from that pledge, which has not held up for millions of Americans on low-quality plans who are receiving cancellation notices.

“Now, if you had one of these plans before the Affordable Care Act came into law and you really liked that plan, what we said was you can keep it if it hasn’t changed since the law passed,” Obama told supporters last Monday. But his message had evolved by the end of the week, as mounting pressure from some in his own party led him to apologize to those who feel misled.

“Even though it’s a small percentage of folks who may be disadvantaged, you know, it means a lot to them,” Obama said Thursday in an interview with NBC News. “And it’s scary to them. And I am sorry that they, you know, are finding themselves in this situation, based on assurances they got from me.” He also hinted that he would support efforts, possibly through legislation, to address the problem.

Asked later Tuesday if Obama agrees with Clinton, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney pointed to Obama’s NBC interview last week.

“Well, I think as you saw the president say in an interview with NBC last week, the answer is yes, the president has tasked his team with looking at a range of options, as he said, to make sure that nobody is put in a position where their plans have been canceled and they can’t afford a better plan even though they’d like to have a better plan,” Carney told reporters at the White House.

Clinton’s criticism comes as his wife, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, is weighing a run for the presidency in 2016.

132 comments
percillasad60
percillasad60

Bill Clinton was "almost the BIGGEST" liar representing the Democrats, like ME who dared to DREAM he was trustworthy, intelligent, and had some integrity!!!  How WRONG was I, humble dumb-founded ME?  How could his foolish, evil person EVER expect us to "believe," HIM.... AGAIN?  Of course he wants to "run interference," for the Democrats ... AGAIN, he wants his stand by her "men," woman to move him right back to "our White House, 2016!!"  This atrocious OBAMACARE, aka... Affordable Health Care Act, is the BIGGEST LIE, yet... from every single ONE of the Democrats, simply stated!!  I have honestly not ONE defensive comment :( for my ONCE beloved PARTY!!  Never again, could I in any state of mind be more hurt, betrayed, and disappointed.  I love this country, I love what it once STOOD for, I actually BELIEVED in our "system," how very moot on my behalf.  First off when Hillary, in her rant and RAGE, stated publically "what does it matter, now," about Bengahazi, my heart sank... yup seriously, next Mr. Obama was bringing HOPE and CHANGE, all in the name of for the very people who voted for him, I again... stood in line over a period of several HOURS, to cast that vote, my entire family had ALWAYS believed in the Democratic Party, so did I . . . sadly NEVER AGAIN, the Democrats have forced this horrific health plan on us, my premiums, and I HAVE checked are no where close to my "BUDGET," and to think, those same Democrats are EXEMPT for what "THEY," and they ALONE have FORCE on us?  How could my previously beloved party been so calculating, dishonest, and careless, for those of us who ELECTED THEM??  Sadly I will NEVER vote again... for any of them.  Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, Joe Biden and the list goes on and on... are so POWERFUL they could care less if any of us, regular hardworking people, who had a "dream," live or die. . . other than for OUR VOTES!!! 

I have decided that I will either NEVER vote for anyone again, or just vote for the "odd person out!!"  Sick beyond nauseam with ALL DEMOCRATS. . . they have destroyed the party I once was extremely committed too. . . NEVER EVER AGAIN, for this one, that is also "all inclusive," regarding my entire FAMILY, also!!!  I'm tucking my tail, in SHAME!!!

maggierose57
maggierose57

You got that right, Bill! Obama is a liar and Obamacare is a sham to bail out the insurance companies. And you, Bill, need to give up that vegan nonsense, and eat like a human being should...you are looking too gaunt and haggard-meat is good for you!!!

KarlGharst
KarlGharst

The Clinton health-care plan was a scam that initially caused Med & Pharm stocks to plunge - then bought for pennies by insider traders who knew it was never going to happen. When it becomes common knowledge that "no lawful govt. can make it's citizens privately contract with one another" the Obammy med insurance scam will fall apart - leaving those who bought Prudential stocks at their inflated price shirtless.

BlondeAmbition
BlondeAmbition

There are a few issues here that have been completely obliterated in the aftermath of the government shutdown and the disastrous roll out of the ACA website. I'm not sure how it is even possible for the President to modify any laws to restore coverage that people had. For instance:

1) Not all the plans that didn't comply with the new ACA guidelines were junk. They may not have covered all 10 requirements, (such as Healthy NY, which did not provide mental health benefits or substance abuse care) but people knew that going in and had WIDE ACCESS to doctors and specialists, as good as any employer plan as I've ever had.

2) Healthy NY and other providers began notifying people as early as July that they would not be providing coverage beyond 12/31/13 and that most people would be eligible for the new ACA plans through the healthcare exchange, (state or federal). That people are losing their coverage is NOT "new" news as the media would have people believe. But that said, the carriers providing this coverage are already in the process of shutting these down, pink slips have been given. How does Obama think that making exceptions or modifications of the law in mid-November will protect people from losing the coverage they liked? The water is already being drained from the tub.

3) Many people in plans like Healthy NY aren't the 'working poor' or at the poverty level. However, they are unemployed and many opted for Healthy NY because it was a lower priced option vs. COBRA. Another ugly detail that has been overlooked by the media: People receiving unemployment do not qualify for the ACA subsidy. Based on comparable plans offered by Healthy NY, premiums for the ACA plans run a MINIMUM of $200 higher without the subsidy.  But it gets even worse ...

4) People who don't qualify for the ACA subsidy are being forced into Medicaid. Again, this includes many unemployed people who held professional jobs and had employer health care coverage. It's no secret that few doctors accept Medicaid. For people who have never had insurance, any coverage may seen like good coverage. But for anyone who has a long standing relationship with their doctor or has been through a serious illness, not having a choice of doctors is beyond unacceptable. And this is all because they are ineligible for the subsidy. And worse still, is this little gem:

5) The icing on the ACA cake --> Doctors are refusing to participate in the ACA plans -- enmasse. The media hasn't caught onto this little detail yet, because they are so preoccupied with the website not working. For anyone that scoffs that this isn't true, call a few of your own doctors and ask if they will be participating in the ACA plans. There was no timetable or deadline for doctors to enroll (kind of unbelievable if the whole point of the exchanges was to allow consumers to shop around -- and you'd think knowing what doctors are available in a particular plan would be important information to have by the Oct 1st rollout) and worse, doctors who participate in plans offered by a specific provider (such as United Healthcare) are under no obligation to participate in United's ACA plan offered in the exchange. Fact.

This is problematic for two reasons. First, people who are turning to the exchanges for coverage are currently in a position of having to choose amongst plans with incomplete information. And second, for people being pushed into ACA because their former plans weren't compliant, if their doctors aren't participating, these plans are worthless -- and more expensive for those not receiving the subsidy (based on Healthy NY).

Again, this isn't an issue for the previously uninsured who didn't have regular doctors, but for others, losing access to their doctors is a total nightmare.

Not sure how the President thinks that any law or modification can roll all this back and provide a net for those so adversely affected. One doctor may seem as good as another until you've been on the receiving end of a diagnosis.

SteveO123
SteveO123

Was Bill Clinton honoring his wife when he received oral from interns while he was president? Was Bill Clinton honoring american citizens when he signed DOMA into law to prevent gay people from ever getting married? Bill Clinton talking about honor is hilarious. Especially since most people will have equal or better coverage under ObamaCare.

HagrinasMivali
HagrinasMivali

We see a mess coming out of Obamacare. Liberals are mad about the website problems and people having their policies canceled. And those on the right are mad about both sides of every issue. On the one hand, they don't like the idea of Obamacare and don't want people to sign up. Then they complain when their are website problems keeping people from signing up. They complain that nobody wants to sign up, and then complain that the website can't handle an overwhelming amount of traffic. They claim that there's too much government interference and too much of the government forcing insurers to do things. But when insurance companies drop plans that they are still allowed to offer, the same people want more government regulations forcing those companies to keep those plans in effect. And if anybody advocates dropping the whole thing and going back to a plan where insurance companies can offer what they want, charge whatever they think they can get away with, and drop people at will, liberals are against it, and those on the right who seem to be begging for it don't seem to want that either.

thealohaman
thealohaman

As one of those folks who had their insurance policy cancelled, I take issue with the characterization of my plan by this article as "low quality".  There was nothing low quality about it and Aetna is not exactly a second rate insurer......

stonetrails
stonetrails

Attention genius voters: Understand Clinton is trying to make himself (actually his wife through osmosis) look honest and sincere for the next presidential run! He was supporting Obama a week ago. FCS people! don't fall for it again!

paulejb
paulejb

"Esquire’s survey found:

  • 57 percent of folks in “the Center” support ending affirmative action in hiring decisions and college admissions. Only 19 percent oppose it.

  • 54 percent oppose a path to citizenship for those who have come to the country illegally. Only 32 percent support it. What’s all this pressure to get the House to take up the Senate bill?

  • 75 percent support requiring photo ID to cast a vote. Only 15 percent oppose."

    The ‘New American Center’ Actually Looks Pretty Right

paulejb
paulejb

Live by the Celebrity, Die by the Celebrity

"It was only a few months ago that Obama was inviting celebrities to the White House to enlist them in the effort to tout Obamacare. Now, it is mockery from the entertainment elite that presents one of his biggest challenges."

Barry 0 will not survive mockery.

barneydidit
barneydidit

The problem right wingers have in condemning the ACA under the premise that it's bad for the economy is that they killed the Democrat's original plan that would have had zero affect on the economy...on the premise that it was "socialist".

Under the ACA, poor people get money from the government, they then use that money to pay the insurance companies, who keep some of that money, then they pay doctors with the rest when the poor person has to see one. If nothing else, that's a terribly inefficient setup.  Under the Public Option that the then Democratic House passed in 09, the government just paid the doctors firsthand when someone that was too poor (or had a pre-existing condition) to access health insurance needed to see one.  Where did that money come from? Unlike Bush's Medicare Part D, which was unfunded, the public option was funded by returning the high income earners tax rates back (almost) to where they were before Bush lowered them. It was the perfect solution- people who couldn't otherwise get medical treatment could get it, insurance companies stayed in business, it was paid for, and it wasn't a "job killer". But Boehner and McConnell called it "socialist", so it was filibustered.

Now we're stuck with a recycled Republican idea that the Heritage Foundation loved when Conservatives proposed it, but now hate because Obama supported it. 

ThomasHall
ThomasHall

Ah, the reich-wingers are out in force. Remember how bad our healthcare was before the ACA and how much the insurance companies abused customers? Recall that healthcare costs DOUBLED under Bush-Cheney along with crude oil prices and our National Debt? Insurance companies and healthcare providers abused customers as they still do. 

They denied pre-existing conditions, charged women higher rates, denied claims, maxed out claims, did not cover preventive healthcare, mental health, etc. Anybody who has had an operation or even routine doctor visits knows how inflated medical and even dental bills are, with padded bills, unnecessary tests and procedures, and outrageous doctor charges with costly brand name prescription drugs whereby the doctor receives a kickback from the drug makers. America's healthcare is ranked 25th or so globally and Americans pay double and receive half the services yet our doctors are the highest paid anywhere and the healthcare providers, drug makers, insurers make the highest profits in our profit-driven not patient-driven healthcare system. The GOP oppose the ACA because it cuts into the excessive profits and abuses of their wealthy healthcare benefactors which is why they blocked a national health insurance  program for over 60 years.

The ACA has already improved healthcare by covering pre-existing conditions, limiting the abuses of the healthcare providers and making them pay customer overcharges, limiting the amount spent on administrative costs, covering cost-saving preventive healthcare, expanding healthcare coverage to millions, allowing the young to stay on their parents' policy until 26 also a cost savings. Those earlier junk insurance policies were a rip-off and many insurance companies conned customers into signing up for more costly insurance before the ACA came in when they could have gotten cheaper insurance under the ACA. Insurance companies do whatever they can get away with since under previous GOP administration nobody was going after them.

Recall also that the bankruptcy laws under Bush-Cheney were changed not to benefit consumers but the credit card companies and the banks many of which were later bailed out. The GOP claimed cardholders were abusing their credit when in fact when the law was passed most bankruptcies were due to overwhelming medical or hospital bills unheard of in Canada, Britain, Germany, Japan, etc.

drudown
drudown

@BlondeAmbition

I have a worse "nightmare" scenario. 

Let’s do a reasonable approximation of the fiscal cost of “repealing” or "defunding" Obamacare- that is, approximate the ACTUAL, out-of-pocket cost including, but not limited to (1) the rising, unsustainable costs of Health Care under the prior format to be reinstated [i.e., with ZERO guarantees whatsoever they won’t be HIGHER]; (2) the direct and indirect costs to date of passing Obamacare and implementation [i.e., what, do you think the People don’t absorb the ACTUAL costs to date if the GOP gets to “repeal” or “undo” Obamacare?] and (3) then add, of course, the direct and indirect costs of "changing back to the old laws."

Let's hear it. 

As an aside, perhaps you'd care to clarify a few other points since you seem to be "in the know."

How has the "new" GOP helped the People?

The GOP "reformed" the Bankruptcy code to exclude returning War Veterans from even filing on account of usurious pre-ACA medical bills.

The GOP refuses to renew Food Stamps after "outsourcing" our entire industrial/manufacturing base.

The GOP "shut down" the government instead of following Article I, Section 8 and just raise taxes.

The GOP refuses to honor the "Appointment Power" of the Constitution.The GOP wants to DIVERT US TAXPAYER funds to "rebuild" Iraq and Afghanistan…and soon Syria and Iran." 

The GOP claims "fracking is safe" and denies Climate Change and Desertification is even real, despite the proven Science otherwise.

Do you deny these inferences? Your failure to respond in turn shall be deemed an admission of veracity.

Oh, but that "darn" ACA website. Right, sure. That's "our real problem" in America. 

(sigh.)

aztecian
aztecian

@thealohaman so far this has been a very small percentage.  if aetna is so great, why'd they drop you?  maybe it's time to move on!

HagrinasMivali
HagrinasMivali

@stonetrails Osmosis has to do with particles passing through a semi-permiable membrane. What does this have to do with osmosis?

aztecian
aztecian

@paulejb lies.  you just keep posting lies.  no one with half a brain will follow these fake statistics. 

paulejb
paulejb

@barneydidit 

ObamaCare will improve the health of America by causing the removal from office of many Democrats in 2014.

barneydidit
barneydidit

@ThomasHall Hey! Be fair, they did give us "In God We Trust" as our National Motto.  I think that was the first bill the Republicans passed after taking over the House...after campaigning for a year on the platform of showing Democrats what a "laser focus on jobs" looked like. 

paulejb
paulejb

@ThomasHall 

Wow! Now the Obama sycophants are calling Bill Clinton a reich-winger. Obama's deadenders will defend him right up to the gates of hell.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@paulejb His poll number look stellar compared to the GOP's. Is GOP favorability even hitting the teens?

BlondeAmbition
BlondeAmbition

@drudown No need to be contentious and put me on trial with your tone -- asking if "I deny these inferences". Calm down. First and foremost, your assumptions couldn't be more off base. I was sharing information objectively about issues that exist with ACA as it exists today, not engaging in a political debate. It's very possible to be pro-ACA and simultaneously point out failures in the implementation. As a cancer survivor, I am very much a supporter of ACA to the extent that it caps certain maximums and provides coverage for pre-existing conditions and other services. I never suggested that ACA should be repealed or reformed, rather, I was drawing attention to very REAL shortcomings that exist and are being overlooked as a result of the attention being channeled to the disastrous launch of the website -- issues that could be described as "unintentional consequences". Since this article addresses Clinton's observations that Obama's promises should be honored, I provided documented information about why that may not even be possible at this point.

I'm not going to be lured into a political debate on fracking (hate it as a cancer survivor) or any other issues you lobbed out there as a distraction. My "failure to respond" as you would call it is simply a refusal to engage in something off topic. I stand by my original comments. Find someone else to argue with and don't read things into postings that aren't there.

barneydidit
barneydidit

@drudown Fortunately for us dru, the Republicans in the House recognized the severity of the problem not having "In God We Trust" as the National Motto a couple of years ago presented, and they fixed that issue for us. Of course some might argue that the tail end of the worst recession in 75 years might be a good time to put religion on the back burner and concentrate on jobs....but one can never accuse the GOP of not having their priorities straight. 

reallife
reallife

@aztecian @thealohaman you must be used to be told what to do in Mexico, but this is AMERICA, chump 

we dont take kindly to orders from the government


aztecian
aztecian

@paulejb @barneydidit good luck.  you and your redneck party on their way out.  when all is up and running, the thugs will be finished.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@paulejb @barneydidit The wage offer still stands clown. Care to bet on that?

paulejb
paulejb

@mantisdragon91 @paulejb 

Nary a one, Bugs. Barry 0, in the other hand, never told the truth in his life except when he admitted being a dope fiend.

drudown
drudown

@BlondeAmbition @drudown 

Why don't you answer the inquiry regarding basic COSTS referenced above? Spare me the general, conclusory statements.

Moreover, spare me the "I don't want to get drawn into a debate" as if, in the end, you cannot simply circumscribe your response to THE COST TO THE PEOPLE of "changing course" AT THIS STAGE. 

Let's hear it.

paulejb
paulejb

@mantisdragon91 

Not quite yet, Bugs. Let's examine the question again once ObamaCare implodes.