House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chairman Darrell Issa is calling on MIT economist and so-called Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber to testify next month about “transparency failures and outright deceptions surrounding Obamacare.”
Issa also sent a letter to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services administrator Marilyn Tavener requesting her testimony as well on Dec. 9.
“I expect Mr. Gruber and Administrator Tavenner to testify publicly next month about the arrogance and deceptions surrounding the passage and implementation of ObamaCare,” Issa said in a statement released Friday.
Gruber became a focal point after several videos surfaced this month showing him explaining that “a lack of transparency” was needed in order for Obamacare to pass. He also said that “the stupidity of the American voter” and the “basic lack of economic understanding of the American voter” allowed the federal health-care law to be passed.
Tavener is on the hot seat after it came to light Thursday that 400,000 dental insurance plan enrollments were included in the final Obamacare sign-up figures for the first enrollment period which ended March 31. The administration proudly announced that it had signed up 7.3 million for Obamacare. That total barely eclipsed the administration’s revised goal of 7 million enrollments.
“The numbers provided by CMS were deceptive and obscured the number of Americans running from exchange plans,” said Issa.
“Adding dental plans allowed the Administration to tout an enrollment total inflated by 400,000 and created the false impression that it had surpassed its goal of 7 million,” he continued.
Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell said that “the mistake we made was unacceptable.”
“From the outset, the health law has been the poster child for this Administration’s broken transparency promises,” Issa said in the statement. “Americans were told if they liked their plans and doctors, they could keep them. They were told the individual mandate wasn’t a tax. None of these were true.”