A new revelation involving Obamacare’s chief architect, MIT Professor Jonathan Gruber, threatens to infuriate the Supreme Court and imperil President Obama’s signature legislative achievement.
Breitbart has discovered a March 28, 2012, transcript from The Daily Beast titled “Live Chat on Health-Care Reform With Economist Jonathan Gruber.” This “Live Chat” occurred on the third day of the Supreme Court hearings and three months prior to the court’s ruling. A portion of the transcript is as follows:
Question: What are your thoughts on how the arguments are going at Supreme Court?
Jonathan Gruber: Going into the hearings I was very confident. Now I am less so. Almost all experts have said this was a very clear legal call in favor of the mandate, but the conservative [sic] justices appear to be taking a very libertarian [sic] stand in their questioning. I still think it will pass muster, but 5-4 at best.
Question: Who will cast deciding vote? Kennedy?
Gruber: There was initially hope that both Roberts & Scalia might be supportive. Clearly Scalia is a lost case. Roberts isn’t looking good either. So it will be Kennedy.
Question: Do you think the lawmakers regret not labeling it a tax rather than a penalty?
Gruber: I don’t think so because it never would have passed if they labeled it a tax. Better to have a 50-50 shot at the supremes than a zero shot in Congress. It’s a sad statement about budget politics in the U.S., but there you have it.
The above comments add troubling context to this week’s revelation by Philadelphia investment adviser Rich Weinstein of a video wherein Gruber was captured deriding “the stupidity of the American voter” and highlighting the importance of using deception to ram through Obamacare.
“This bill was written in a tortured way to make sure CBO did not score the mandate as taxes,” Gruber says in the video. “If CBO [Congressional Budget Office] scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies. Okay, so it’s written to do that… Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, you know, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical to get the thing to pass.”
As Jeffery H. Anderson of The Weekly Standard wrote on Monday, “President Obama publicly insisted the individual mandate was not a tax, and Obamacare’s own text describes it as a ‘penalty,’ not a ‘tax.’ Yet, by a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court held that the mandate was unconstitutional as a penalty levied under the commerce-clause power and could stand only as a tax — albeit a previously unheard-of tax that compels Americans to buy a product or service of the federal government’s choosing in order to avoid having to pay it. It’s an unprecedented federal tax on inactivity.”
Apparently, Gruber thinks a lack of transparency is also the key to persuading Congress and the Supreme Court. What is scary is that he may be right. Gruber accurately predicted the outcome, except it was Roberts and not Kennedy who was the 5th and deciding vote that upheld the law.
In July 2012, Avik Roy of Forbes wrote an article titled “The Inside Story on How Roberts Changed His Supreme Court Vote on Obamacare” detailing this dynamic.
“The Obamacare Supreme Court ruling seemed strange,” wrote Roy. “Chief Justice John Roberts’ reasoning was incoherent. The conservative’s dissent read like it was originally meant to be a majority opinion. Now, we know why. According to Jan Crawford of CBS News, John Roberts switched sides in May, withstanding a ‘one-month campaign’ from his conservative colleagues to change his mind.”
As Breitbart reported on August 7th, with each discovery of videos and documents highlighting Gruber’s key role and penchant for duplicity, Obama and Democrats distance themselves more and more from the politically toxic Gruber.
How the Supreme Court and lawmakers will respond to these revelations of Gruber’s penchant for deception and opacity remains to be seen.
What is clear, however, is that Americans demand a different course, one that leads to Oblimination—a desire for change and the reversal of Obama’s failed policies.