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11.12.13

Bill Clinton Reproaches Obama On ACA

Bill Clinton joined the chorus of detractors who think the White House should allow those losing their healthcare plans because of Obamacare to keep them.

In an interview with OZY.com, Bill Clinton chastised Barack Obama for failing to live up to the promise that, under the Affordable Care Act, "if you like your plan, you can keep it."

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Clinton said "I personally believe, even if it takes changing the law, the president should honor the commitment the federal government made to those people and let them keep what they got." He cited the example of a young person he met who now had to pay a higher monthly premium for his health care, even though his copays and deductibles were much lower.

Obama has come under significant criticism after about 3.5 million Americans, according to the Associated Press, have lose their current health care coverage as a result of the law, despite his adminstration's insistance that the introduction of Obamacare would not cause anyone to unwillingly lose their health insurance. The health care plans that have been cancelled are those that have not met the requirements of the Affordable Care Act and are considered "substandard." In an interview with Chuck Todd of NBC, Obama said "I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation based on assurances they got from me."The resulting uproar has sparked the introduction of several bills in Congress to at least delay, if not entirely bar, the cancelation of these plans.

 Clinton took pains to emphasize that the Affordable Care Act was a good thing and an important step forward. Instead, his critcism of Obama seemed to be on messaging far more than on policy. After all, while the young man Clinton pointed to in his example was still getting better coverage through his new plan, he preferred his old one because it was cheaper.  Clinton's critique was that Obama had made an obligation to the American people in stating "if you like your plan, you can keep it" and needed to follow through as a result.

With reports already circulating that the White House is considering an adminstrative fix to help those who have seen their plans cancelled under the Affordable Care Act, Clinton's critique seems to make such a rule change inevitable.