(p. A4) Jonathan Gruber, the economist at the heart of a fresh debate about the Affordable Care Act, has had more than a dozen appointments to visit the White House since Democrats began drafting the health law in 2009, records show.
The visits included at least one group meeting with President Barack Obama , as well as appointments with senior administration officials who helped shape the 2010 law that expanded health insurance to millions of Americans.
The White House in recent days has tried to distance itself from Mr. Gruber, a 49-year-old Massachusetts Institute of Technology economist, since a 2013 video surfaced last week in which he said the law passed because of the “huge political advantage” of the legislation’s lacking transparency. He also referred to the “stupidity of the American voter.”
Republicans have seized on the comments as evidence that supporters of the law purposely misled the public about its costs.
“It is amusing to watch Washington liberals discount Mr. Gruber’s truth-telling as a gaffe and disown” his involvement in the law, said Sen. Orrin Hatch (R., Utah).
For the full story, see:
STEPHANIE ARMOUR and COLLEEN MCCAIN NELSON. “Health Adviser Gruber Logged Regular White House Visits.” The Wall Street Journal (Tues., Nov. 18, 2014): A4.
(Note: the online version of the story has the date Nov. 17, 2014.)