Ben Nelson: Democrats Warned Obama on Keep-Your-Plan Pledge

Wednesday, 04 Dec 2013 06:26 PM

By Greg Richter

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Former Sen. Ben Nelson voted for Obamacare when he was in Congress, but now acknowledges that the rollout created "unnecessary confusion."

Nelson, now chief executive officer of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, told Fox News Channel's "Your World with Neil Cavuto" on Wednesday that he and other senators were wary of President Barack Obama's pledge that people would be able to keep insurance plans they liked.

Did they tell the president, Cavuto asked.

"We said it to the appropriate people," Nelson said, but acknowledged that he had no idea whether the message reached the Oval Office.

Nelson, the former Democratic senator from Nebraska, wouldn't say Obama lied.

"He has his own explanation . . . and he's given it," Nelson said. He also declined to say he regretted supporting the law.

Cavuto said many of Nelson's former colleagues have told him off the record that they do regret their votes.

One person happy with her vote is Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn. She has opposed the Affordable Care Act since before it was passed, and hasn't changed her mind.

She told Cavuto she had just signed her family up for insurance through the online exchanges – she's required to do so as a member of Congress – and the results weren't good.

Like others encountering sticker shock, Bachmann said her own premium "mammothly grew." She said her new premium will be more than $2,400 a month, and her deductible quadrupled. She didn't say how much her current premium is.

Cavuto played a clip of former President Bill Clinton predicting that once the website glitches are fixed, people will quit worrying about Obamacare.

"If you believe in what the former president said, you'd believe in unicorns, too," Bachmann told Cavuto.

The ACA's problems will only worsen, she said, when people begin using healthcare services.

"People are going to find out how limited their choices are in doctors, on networks," she said. "There's one problem after another. This is whack-a-mole."

Many, she predicted, will opt to pay the penalty for not having insurance. Since penalties will be collected through tax refunds, they'll simply restructure their tax payments so they don't get money back, she predicted.

"People are going to game the system because they can't afford it," Bachmann said.

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