Former Speaker Nancy Pelosi has denied knowing who Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber is, but her Speaker of the House website began touting his analysis of the ACA in December 2009.
At a press conference this morning former Speaker Nancy Pelosi was asked about comments made by Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber. Gruber has been in the news this week after several video clips surfaced in which he says the ACA was intentionally designed to take advantage of American’s ignorance. In one clip Gruber referred to “the stupidity of the American voter.” He also said “lack of transparency” was a “huge political advantage” in passing the bill.
“I don’t know who he is. He didn’t help write our bill,” Pelosi said in reply to a question at her weekly press briefing. “You have a person who wasn’t writing our bill commenting on what was going on when we were writing the bill who has…withdrawn some of the statements that he made,” Pelosi offered in a somewhat halting cadence. She added, “Let’s put him aside.”
Contrary to Pelosi’s claim of ignorance, her Speaker of the House website began touting Gruber in December 2009. The post mentions his name six times and identifies him as a “noted MIT health care economist.” (archive uncovered by @dcdude1776)
As this March 2010 story at the Huffington Post by progressive blogger Jane Hamsher makes clear, Pelosi was just one of many top Democrats who relied on Gruber’s work to promote the bill. Others include former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Sen. Harry Reid, Sen. John Kerry, White House Office of Health Reform Director Nancy-Ann DeParle, the Council of Economic Advisers and the White House blog. In addition the DNC touted him 71 times in 2009 alone.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest responded to the controversy today by denying the truth of Gruber’s statements. Politico reports Earnest said, “The fact of the matter is, the process associated with the writing and passing and implementing of the Affordable Care Act has been extraordinarily transparent.” Earnest added that President Obama, “is proud of the transparent process that was undertaken to pass that bill into law.”
Update: So here’s Pelosi herself in 2009 touting Gruber. She seems to know who he is:
— Jeremy Art (@cspanJeremy) November 13, 2014