7 Facts That Prove Obamacare Subsidies Fiasco Is Not a ‘Typo’

Since July 22nd, when a federal appeals court panel dealt a potentially major blow to Obamacare by ruling that participants in health exchanges run by the federal government in 34 states are not eligible for billions of dollars in tax subsidies, several facts have emerged which question Jonathan Gruber, an MIT economist and chief architect of Obamacare, and his views on whether the intent of Obamacare was that subsidies should only be available for state-run Obamacare exchanges. 

Here are the seven most important facts we have learned in the last ten days about Gruber’s views:

The tapes are clear – Two clips from two different speeches in January 2010 have surfaced wherein Gruber clearly states that subsidies are only for state exchanges. Specifically:

  • The clips are confirmed as Gruber speaking and in one of the clips his state-only exchange comment was made during the prepared portion of his speech
  • Gruber makes the same argument, provides significant detail, and uses similar language in both clips
  • Both speeches were made more than a year and a half after Obamacare had been signed into law by President Barack Obama, but only ten months before the time individual states were required to not only notify Health and Human Services (HHS) of their intent to set up an exchange but also submit a plan to HHS specifying the implementation details of their exchange

Numerous Gruber publications support the tapes After the first clip was discovered, Gruber claimed his remarks were a “mistake” made while “speaking off-the-cuff.” However, a second video and three separate reports and articles were discovered by Breitbart that demonstrate Gruber believed Obamacare subsidies were only for state run exchanges.  

HHS relied on a Gruber article – In order to defend itself in its Virginia Commonwealth Obamacare lawsuit, HHS used one of the three uncovered reports, titled “Getting the Facts Straight on Health Care Reformwritten by Gruber for The New England Journal of Medicine in December 2009. In the lawsuit, the Commonwealth argued that Congress exceeded its Article 1 powers in enacting Obamacare. Page 6 of HHS’s Reply Memorandum in Support of Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment specifically names Gruber’s article – “See, e,g., Jonathan Gruber, Getting the Facts Straight on Health Care Reform, 361 NEW ENGL.J. OF MED. 2497, 2498 (2009).” 

Gruber spent significant time reviewing the Senate-proposed Obamacare bill and strongly supported the plan – As an article published on the Huffington Post by Jane Hamsher titled “How the White House Used Jonathan Gruber’s Work to Orchestrate the Appearance of Broad Consensus” makes clear: 

On Monday the 23rd, the DNC was sending the Brownstein column around in its entirety…one of 71 emails they would send touting Gruber’s work and it was included in OFA’s Monday Morning News Clips on BarackObama.com.

The Brownstein article mentioned above was published on November 21, 2010. The Senate bill had been read into the record and placed on the Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders only a week earlier on November 16, 2009. Brownstein starts this widely distributed article by saying:

When I reached Jonathan Gruber on Thursday, he was working his way, page by laborious page, through the mammoth health care bill Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had unveiled just a few hours earlier. Gruber is a leading health economist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology who is consulted by politicians in both parties.

The article quotes Gruber as saying “Everything is in here… I can’t think of anything I’d do that they are not doing in the bill. You couldn’t have done better than they are doing.”

Congress relied on Gruber – As Michael F. Cannon, Cato Institute’s Director of Health Policy Studies, points out in his blog, “Gruber is not a member of Congress, so this isn’t direct evidence that Congress intended to offer tax credits only in state-established Exchanges.”

However, as highlighted in the Hamsher article, then-Speaker Pelosi touted “the Gruber Analysis” on her website. Furthermore, Senator Reid read from the piece on the floor of the Senate, saying that it provided substantiation from someone “who is one of the most respected economists in the world.” Moreover, on December 3, Kathleen Sebelius released a statement on the “Benefits of Health Insurance Reform for Businesses.” She substantiated claims made in the statement by citing Gruber’s November 3 testimony before the HELP Committee, and his November 5 paper. 

Gruber’s argument is logical – During the January 2010 time period when these two recently uncovered clips of Gruber occurred, individual states were considering whether or not to set up their own exchanges. Even though HHS was pressuring states to establish their own exchanges, many governors, especially Republican governors, were balking. Gruber’s comment—”I think what’s important to remember politically about this is if you’re a state and you don’t set up an exchange that means your citizens don’t get their tax credits”—is a logical argument and a form of leverage HHS and the Obama administration likely used to pressure GOP governors to set up their own exchanges.

Gruber’s independence and credibility are damaged – Having a second tape and several publications emerge after Gruber claimed it was a “mistake“he  made while “speaking off-the-cuff” has severely damaged Gruber’s credibility. Unfortunately for Gruber and the Obama Administration, this is not the first time Gruber’s credibility has been questioned. In January 2010, after he had made numerous speeches and had several of his publications widely distributed and heralded as credible independent work, Gruber had to admit he was not independent. And, as Jane Hamsher wrote in her article, “In December 28, Gruber published an op-ed in the Washington Post — in which he neglected to mention his contract to consult with the White House on this very issue. He was asked point-blank if he had any contracts related to the piece for which he was being paid, and he said ‘no.’  The Post subsequently published a correction.”

In the less than two weeks since the federal appeals court decision, the Obama administration’s claim that Obamacare always intended to include subsidies for the Federal exchange has been dismantled. Now, Obamacare appears headed back to the Supreme Court, where even more damaging material is sure to emerge. Whatever the outcome, Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber’s own words and writings make one thing abundantly clear: the language stating only state Obamacare exchanges are eligible for subsides is no “typo.”




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Saudi King Publicly Blames Hamas for Gaza War

In a stunning five minute statement read on state television late Friday, Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah, leader of Israel’s oldest and most implacable foe, called the Hamas-Israel war in Gaza a “collective massacre” caused by Hamas. 

It is just the latest signal in a tectonic shift in Middle East geopolitics that has been largely overlooked by Western media seemingly still committed to building upon its decades-old narrative that Israel remains the united enemy of the Arab world.

In the 75 year history of conflict between Arabs and Jews in the Middle East, no state has been more consistently intransigent against the very notion of a sovereign Jewish presence in the region than the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, founded by Abdullah’s grandfather, Ibn Saud, in 1923.

Just weeks ago, before Hamas’ current war against Israel, it would have unthinkable to suggest that a Saudi King would even hint that any entity other than Israel bore any responsibilities for actions perceived as harmful to Palestinians. 

Abdullah’s statement, read by a news anchor on behalf of the ailing 90-year old Monarch, that the violence in Gaza has led to “various forms” of terrorism, whether from groups, organizations, or states, is seen in the Middle East and Arab states as a flat-out repudiation of Hamas.

Perhaps even more remarkable, while King Abdullah condemned the consequences of a war he termed “devastating” to Palestinians, he issued no demands upon Israel.

As has been pointed out numerous times by Breitbart contributors, Saudi Arabia’s now open disavowal of any common cause with Hamas reinforces an emerging and wholly improbable new alliance uniting every Arab state save Qatar together with Israel and against the United States.

As remarkable as was King Abdullah’s statement by itself, it pales in comparison with the transformation of the relationship between Egypt and Israel. From cold no-belligerents under President Mubarak, to near antagonists under the Muslim Brotherhood government of Mohammed Morsi, today Israel and Egypt are tightly cleaved military allies.

In the harshest words ever used by a Saudi King to condemn any Palestinian “resistance” to what is routinely called “Zionist aggression,” King Abdullah’s statement said, “It is shameful and disgraceful that these terrorists are doing this in the name of religion, killing the people whose killing Allah has forbidden, and mutilating their bodies and feeling proud in publishing this.” 

The king went on to say of Hamas’ war against Israel, “They have distorted the image of Islam with its purity and humanity and smeared it with all sorts of bad qualities by their actions, injustice and crimes.”

Unlike President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, the guardian of Islam’s holy places and thus the putative leader of the entire Muslim world, King Abdullah did not call upon Israel to meet any Hamas demands. He made no calls for “opening up border passages” between Gaza and Israel/Egypt– thought by many to be the primary strategic objective of Hamas’ war. 

He issued no demands that Hamas be permitted to build a seaport, let alone that Israel and Egypt be required to help fund it. Nor did he petition Israel or the Palestinian Authority to resume cash payments to the more than 44,000 Hamas “civil servants” in Gaza rendered jobless as a result of the recent PA-Hamas unity government agreement.




Source: Breitbart Feed

‘Destroy HAMAS’ – From Bar-Ilan to Boston

In this episode of “Operation: Protective Edge – Destroy HAMAS,” we get the viewpoints from two world class experts on the HAMAS terrorist organization. 

From Bar-Ilan University, ouside of Tel-Aviv, Dr. Mordechai Kedar offers his knowledge and understanding of the Arab world to formulate a proper strategy in dealing with the enemy. From outside of Boston, USA, Dr. Andrew Bostom, medical doctor and author of “The Legacy of Jihad” & “The Legacy of Islamic Anti-Semitism” explains the root cause of this continual battle. 

Host Tom Trento ties together the doctrine of the Hamas, how that doctrine effects its’ followers beliefs, and how those beliefs manifest in the violent actions we see today.

Follow The United West on Twitter @TheUnitedWest




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Michael Sam Not the Same Since Fame, Says College Roommate, Steelers Hopeful

Michael Sam’s college roommate says that the defensive end has changed. Eric Waters says that the openly-gay pass rusher is “not the same fun-loving, joking guy” that he knew in college.

Waters and Michael Sam played together for the University of Missouri’s Tigers, and Waters has watched Sam negotiate the media spotlight after he announced that he is gay and was subsequently drafted by the St. Louis Rams.

Waters, who was picked up as an undrafted tight end by the Steelers this year, said in a recent interview that Sam has changed and does not seem to be the same guy he knew in college.

“He is a nice guy, but I will say the truth: A little bit of him has changed,” the Steelers hopeful said. “It is really not my situation to speculate at this point, but he is not the same Michael Sam anymore.”

Asked to elaborate, Waters said, “Just the way he acts and carries himself. I was watching the NFL Network the other day and I think it was Marshall Faulk who said that he keeps referring to himself in the third person as Michael Sam this, Michael Sam that. That’s not the same guy we knew back when we were living together. He is not the same fun-loving, joking guy that really didn’t care about stuff like publicity.”

“I don’t know if that is because he is more focused on the fame and the opportunity he has now or whatever,” the player said.

Waters insisted that he never cared about Sam’s sexual preference.

“Like I tell everybody else, I don’t care about your sexual preference or if you are black or white or freaking purple,” he said. “As long as you can play football, that’s all that matters. We had a common denominator: We were brought to the same university because we had the ability to play football. That’s all that matters.”

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com




Source: Breitbart Feed

Pelosi Calls Down the Wrath of Heaven on Conservatives

Friday, from the floor of the House of Representatives, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi attacked her Republican colleagues for their push of passage of two bills to deal with the ongoing crisis at the U.S. southern border.

Pelosi invoked a letter from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops lobbying against the GOP efforts and urged her Republicans to read the the Parable of the Good Samaritan from the New Testament of the Bible.

“Instead of bringing legislation forward that could solve this problem really and truly, it has resisted the appeals of humanitarian and religious leaders across all faiths,” she said. “Evangelicals call on us to strengthen our country’s position to providing safety and refuge to the vulnerable. This legislation we have before us does not do that. It is wrong. don’t take my word for it. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops urges members to oppose [HR] 5230, and work together to craft legislation that is more befitting the United States of America and the American people’s history of compassion, and generosity to vulnerable children and refugees.”

She went on to add the legislation dishonors America and continued to cite the Bible as her justification.

“I certainly hope that you will consider rereading the Parable of the Good Samaritan who helps a stranger,” she said. “He did not ignore or harm a stranger he saw on the road. Perhaps that may be a path back I pray that it’s so. Mr. Speaker, I want to submit for the record the letter of the bishop the evangelical table and the list of hundreds of organizations, faith-based and due process oriented who oppose these piece of legislation.”

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