National News

Health care law architect apologizes for 'stupidity of American voter' remark

Posted November 12, 2014

Map Marker  Find News Near Me

— An architect of the Affordable Care Act says he regrets saying last year that "the stupidity of the American voter" helped Congress approve the health care law.

A professor of economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Jonathan Gruber served as a consultant to the Obama administration in 2009 as it put together the health care overhaul.

During a 2013 academic conference, Gruber said the law was "written in a tortured way" to avoid a bad review from the Congressional Budget Office and to obscure some of the financial aspects of the law.

"Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage," he said, according to a video of the conference that recently surfaced. "Call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically, that was really, really critical to get anything to pass."

Gruber now says he was speaking "off the cuff" and "inappropriately." The point he was trying to make, he said, was that giving people money to offset health insurance costs was "not politically feasible," so subsidies to help low-income people obtain health coverage were done through the tax code.

12 Comments

This story is closed for comments.

Oldest First
View all
  • lessismore Nov 12, 2014

    He only apologized because he was caught...but, he meant it or he would not have said it. Always embarrassing when you get caught with your pants down and there is nothing else you can say....except, sorry you caught me.

  • papasan Nov 12, 2014

    The American voter DID NOT enact Obama CAre; the Democrats in Congress DID! How can he blame it on the American voter, we DID NOT vote on it!

  • ALLIN Nov 12, 2014

    He should have brouight this up before the election. GOP would have won more of the races

  • flyguync Nov 12, 2014

    Why should he apologize for saying something absolutely true? I saw a recent video clip of college students that can name all the Jersey Shore characters but couldn't name the current vice president - and these people can vote. Pretty sad.

  • Imma Annoid Nov 12, 2014
    user avatar

    View quoted thread


    All government is redistribution of taxes. Democrats to the so called "less fortunate" and indoctrination programs, and Republicans to their friends in business.

    Oh, and both to themselves.

  • dmiller6 Nov 12, 2014

    It is more a redistribution law than a healthcare law.

  • Garnerwolf1 Nov 12, 2014

    I agree with what he said. Politics is all smoke and mirrors.

  • Paul M Nov 12, 2014

    Don't think he said anything wrong !

  • Bullcity34 Nov 12, 2014

    View quoted thread


    Yeah me neither that's surprising. I guess the public pressure is starting to add up

  • miseem Nov 12, 2014

    He is correct. Most of the public thinks they can get and retain the benefits of government they want, cut benefits they don't like, and have their taxes cut to boot. The problem is, everyone has a different menu of things they want and expect to get with everyone else paying for, and other things they will refuse pay for regardless of the overall benefits. The country is moving quickly from a me first attitude to a me only attitude.

More...