Tags: Republicans | Gruber | Obamacare

GOP Set to Give Gruber 'Opportunity to Say Something Stupid'

Image: GOP Set to Give Gruber 'Opportunity to Say Something Stupid'
(Dominick Reuter/Reuters/Landov)

By    |   Tuesday, 09 Dec 2014 09:08 AM

Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber will testify before Congress on Tuesday to explain his controversial comments about the federal healthcare law.

Republicans will use the session to grill the former Obamacare adviser for saying that voters were "too stupid to understand" the law's main tax, saying the legislative process relied on "the exploitation of the public," and alleging that there were "deceptions" in Obamacare.

"Tomorrow is all about giving him the opportunity to say something stupid," a Republican aide told The Hill. "It's going to be a lot of fun."

Gruber had more than a dozen appointments to visit the White House after Obama administration officials and congressional Democrats began drafting the law in 2009, and received close to $400,000 for his work from HHS.

Longtime member of the House Oversight Committee GOP Rep. John Mica intends to find out how closely Gruber worked with Democrats and exactly how much he earned during his work for the federal healthcare law, The Hill reported.

"Within the administration and the White House, there's plenty of ties to this guy," Mica told The Hill.

After videos surfaced last month of Gruber's comments, President Barack Obama and senior administration officials portrayed Gruber as a relatively minor figure in the development of the healthcare overhaul.

Obama characterized him as "some adviser who was never on our staff," while House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said she didn't know who he was.

Obamacare critics say Gruber's many contacts with administration officials and six-figure compensation for his work, among other things, show he played a substantial role in designing the program and attempting to persuade Americans to support it.
 
Democrat Rep. Elijah Cummings, the committee's top Democrat, said he would use the hearing to defend the healthcare law, not focus on Gruber, according to The Hill.

"If the Republicans want to take time and throw darts at Mr. Gruber, so be it," Cummings said. "I think he has put himself in a position to be asked almost anything."

Republicans will also be focusing on other areas where they believe the administration mislead the public on Obamacare.

North Carolina GOP Rep. Mark Meadows said he intends to question Marilyn Tavenner, the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, on how the agency will help customers whose tax bills increase if their federal subsidies change.

She will also likely be asked to explain why she provided an inaccurate enrollment figure to the committee earlier this fall, The Hill reported.

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Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber will testify before Congress on Tuesday to explain his controversial comments about the federal healthcare law.
Republicans, Gruber, Obamacare
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2014-08-09
Tuesday, 09 Dec 2014 09:08 AM
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