Ignorance or dishonesty?

Last week we learned that the House of Representatives version of the healthcare bill will outlaw private medical insurance.  Here is the quote from page 16 of the bill in Investor’s Business Daily:

“Except as provided in this paragraph, the individual health insurance issuer offering such coverage does not enroll any individual in such coverage if the first effective date of coverage is on or after the first day [the legislation becomes law]”

If and when this becomes law, you will no longer be able to enroll in a new private insurance plan.  If your current plan changes, you will be kicked out (by the government), and if you lose your job or leave your job to start your own business, you will be forced to take the public “option.”  This is in direct opposition to what president Obama has been claiming all along. 

“No matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people.  If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period.  If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.”

When confronted with the actual bill by a blogger on a conference call this week, Mr. Obama said he hadn’t heard of it.

“You know, I have to say that I am not familiar with the provision you are talking about.”

He then said very boldly and directly that he would not sign a bill that did that.

“I have committed myself consistently to a very simple proposition: If you have health insurance, and you like it, and you have a doctor that you like, then you can keep it, period.  And I won’t sign a bill that somehow would make it tougher for people to keep their health insurance.”

This is unmistakable.  Obama is saying clearly and definitively that he would not sign a bill that does what the House bill says.  He is then saying he could not sign the House bill as it is currently written.  To not know that the very bill he is urgently pressing Congress to pass does exactly what he says it will not is at the very least embarrassing.  It ought to be frightening.  So should something he said today.  Unbelievably, our president said:

“Under each of these bills…You won’t lose your healthcare if you change jobs, if you lose your job, or if you start a business…We’ve agreed that our health reform bill will promote choice…Americans will be able to compare the price and quality of different plans, and pick the plan that they want.  If you like your current plan, you will be able to keep it.”

That is not what the bills currently being constructed say.  It is the opposite.  Either our president is terribly misinformed or he is openly lying to us.  In either case, American citizens ought to speak up and right now.