President Trump has said the GOP will become the party of health care, but Jonathan Gruber, a well-known architect of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, believes ObamaCare is the foundation to solving health-care issues and the GOP’s perceptions about the law are off-base.
The MIT professor, in response to FOX Business’ Maria Bartiromo asking what the solution to healthcare in America is “knowing that ObamaCare was way too expensive,” said: “I disagree that ObamaCare is too expensive,” adding that the “solution is that we have to recognize single-payer isn’t happening politically. It’s just too challenging” he said.
Bartiromo pushed back saying “all of the Democratic contenders for 2020” have endorsed Bernie Sanders’ Medicare-for-all plan, “which wipes out the private health insurance business.”
But Gruber offered a different take:
“First of all not all of them have, several of them have,” he said. “Second of all I think that what the Democrats recognize is an aspirational goal, which I think we should have is to cover all Americans with health insurance. But they recognize that there’s many ways to get there.”
Despite opposition from the Republican Party, Gruber still believes that the Affordable Care Act is a “step in the right direction.”
“Even with the attacks of the opposite party, still covering 15 million Americans — we need to build on that,” he said.
“We can’t get there right away. We can’t move to single payer right now in America, I believe, because 180 million Americans don’t want to give up their private health insurance” he noted.
In Gruber’s opinion, the “right way” to think about what Sanders is proposing and also to what Democrats are signing onto, is as an “aspirational notion” not a policy proposal.
“I haven’t talked to [the Democrats supporting the plan],” he said. “But I presume they’re smart enough and they understand this is not happening this year, next year, or the year after.”
“This is about goals of getting to a nation where all Americans are guaranteed affordable health care– it cannot be discriminated against by insurance companies.”
When Bartiromo asked whether the goal is to wipe out the private insurance industry he replied: “I don’t believe that that’s a realistic goal,” adding that “proposals are put out to start a conversation not end it.”
“Bernie, I presume, he understands the bill he put forward is not going to become law,” he added. “It’s getting the conversation started around a set of critical issues.”