“If you like your health-care plan, you will be able to keep your health-care plan. Period.” – President Barack Obama
The President’s oft-repeated promise helped to rally the American people to socialized medicine with the assurance that although the federal government would assume control of a sixth of the Nation’s economy, millions of Americans’ healthcare plans would remain unchanged. Within a month of Obamacare’s implementation, however, those millions of Americans were surprised to learn that their insurance companies are canceling their private health plans in 2014 to comply with new regulations.
Outrage ensued. Yet, remarkably the cancellations are a feature, not a bug, of Obamacare. A broken promise, then, by the President? Not quite.
While the news of the healthcare plan cancellations was breaking, the American Freedom Law Center was quietly working behind the scenes to develop the narrative that has since shaped the entire debate.
On November 9, our close colleague, policy ally, and AFLC Advisory Board Member, Andrew C. McCarthy, whose opinions are widely respected from the politico class to the New York media establishment, pointed out in an article in National Review Online that President Barack Obama is “guilty of fraud — serial fraud — that is orders of magnitude more serious than frauds the Justice Department routinely prosecutes, and that courts punish harshly.” McCarthy asserted that the remedy for “profound presidential corruption” is impeachment and removal.
The President, a self-described constitutional expert, knew this too. Backed into a corner and trapped by his diminishing credibility with the American people and the threat of a congressional backlash, he proposed a fix that would allow insurance companies to bypass the “law of the land” and renew the healthcare plans that Obamacare forced them to terminate.
Once again, McCarthy was one of the first to slam Obama’s “lawless fix,” arguing that it is simply a “waiver” for insurance companies to reissue policies that are legally unenforceable because they do not comply with Obamacare. In short, it was grandstanding and political posturing.
But back to Obama’s big lie. The fact that millions of Americans have lost their coverage under Obamacare is undeniable, so Obama and other Democrats had to break out the linguistic gymnastics. In what McCarthy has called the “5 percent con job,” Obama is now claiming that those millions of Americans who lost their healthcare plans “constitute a tiny, insignificant minority in the greater scheme of things.” Indeed, Obama claimed that those who lost their coverage are not only limited to consumers in the individual health insurance market (as opposed to the large majority of Americans who receive employer-based insurance), they make up only 5 percent of all health insurance consumers.
While McCarthy demonstrated that the 5 percent figure is a deception, AFLC provided additional information that ignited a simmering controversy into a full blown presidential scandal.
A brief background. This past week, Obama embarked upon a “Don’t Blame Me, but I Will Apologize Nonetheless” tour, using what was left of his withering credibility to assure the growing number of Americans — from both ends of the political spectrum — that his administration was completely in the dark about the coverage loss. Unfortunately (for Obama), the Obama Justice Department didn’t wait to get Valerie Jarrett’s “nescivimus memo” because its lawyers already popped the goose in the oven nearly a month ago in an opposition brief to our ongoing legal challenge to the Obamacare “contraception mandate.” The DOJ’s infamous admission:
Even under the grandfathering provision, it is projected that more group health plans will transition to the requirements under the regulations as time goes on. Defendants have estimated that a majority of group health plans will have lost their grandfather status by the end of 2013.
Too soon, too late. The DOJ brief broke into the broader policy battle on Monday, spawning editorials, national news articles, a National Review article, and a Fox News prime time television appearance by Andrew C. McCarthy, who explained to Megyn Kelly that the brief was another example of Obama’s “sinister” lie. Meanwhile, silence looms over the White House. In turn, Megyn Kelly, a former top-notch lawyer, got it and pounded it throughout her show with every subsequent guest, including Karl Rove and Judge Napolitano. From there to Rush Limbaugh and into the public discourse on this issue was not a large leap.
In short, within 48 hours, the national discussion changed dramatically. What was once an allegation — and a major one at that — turned into an astounding fact. We take a moment here to highlight the American Freedom Law Center’s role in this critical policy shift – from AFLC’s close relationships with freedom fighters like Andrew McCarthy to its litigation efforts that forced the Obama administration to play its hand in what is amounting to be one of the worst Presidential scandals since Watergate. No doubt, as this case demonstrates, AFLC is shaping and influencing the national discourse, which in turn shapes public policy. Below is just a sample of the news coverage regarding the DOJ brief, just within a span of two days. And forward we march . . . .