The new online health insurance markets, the portals to coverage for most of the nation’s nearly 50 million uninsured people, have gotten off to a rocky start since their Oct. 1 launch. The law was also central to the budget fight that led to a 16-day partial government shutdown. Politicians had these comments on the Sunday talk shows about the state of President Barack Obama’s health care law:
“A visit to the website is kind of like a trip to the Department of Motor Vehicles in your state. … We’re going to do everything we can in the future to try to repeal it. But that requires a Republican Senate and a different president.” — Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
“The test is going to be in January, how many people are enrolled and what the quality of service that they’re getting. I think that if we get that right, everyone will regret that the early weeks were choppy on the website. But the test is, ‘Are people getting coverage and are they getting the care that they need?’ And we’re confident we’re going to be on track to do that.” — Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“I think the best way to repeal Obamacare is to have an alternative. We never hear the alternative. We could do this in a much lower cost with improved quality based on our principles, free-market principles. And two, show how Obamacare, flawed to its core, doesn’t work. So have a little bit of self-restraint. It might actually be a politically — a better approach to see the massive dysfunction. But we don’t even hear about that because we’ve stepped on that message.” — Former Gov. Jeb Bush, R-Fla., on ABC’s “This Week.”
“This has to be fixed, but what doesn’t have to be fixed is the fact that tens of millions more people will have access to affordable, quality health care, that no longer having a pre-existing medical condition will bar you from getting affordable care, that all of the initiatives that are going to be positive for a healthier life, liberty to pursue your happiness, not chained to a policy but following your passion — all of that is in place.” — House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California, on ABC.
“Setting up — in the 21st century — setting up a website where people can go on and buy something is not that complicated. People do this every single day. The inability of the federal government to set up a website where people can go on and buy something like health insurance does not bode well for the much more complicated elements of this law that are yet to be rolled out.” — Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., on “Fox News Sunday.”
“There is no perfect law. As I said before, the only perfect law was brought down on clay tablets by Senator Moses off a mountain. So we should sit down and look at constructive ways to make Obamacare, the Affordable Care Act, work better.” — Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., on Fox.
“It’s been a fiasco. Send Air Force One out to Silicon Valley, load it up with some smart people, bring them back to Washington and fix this problem. It’s ridiculous, and everybody knows that.” — Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., on CNN’s “State of the Union.”