Last night, Jon Stewart had some advice for 2009-era President Obama, who said that if you like your plan you can keep it, period. "First of all, I don't think you're supposed to read the punctuation in the speeches," Stewart said. "And second of all, how would that definitive statement sound post-implementation of said new healthcare act when it has become abundantly clear that you cannot always keep your plan or your doctor."
On Tuesday, the president tweaked that statement to "if you like your plan you can keep it, if it hasn't changed since the law passed," which Stewart wasn't buying. "No, what you said was you can keep it, period. Now what you said (today) was you can keep your plan, ellipses comma because it may no longer meet the minimum requirements or your insurance company may stop offering individual plans... period, emoticon denoting a combination of embarrassment and arrogance."
So yes, Obama was dishonest. But before his opponents start dancing around his political grave they should check the lies they've been telling. Like the woman who's worried she'll be paying $20,000/year in premiums and won't be able to get insurance for her daughter, who has a pre-existing condition:
Or Dr. Ben Carson, the conservative activist who claimed that Vladimir Lenin said socialized medicine was the key to a socialist state, then said Obamacare is worse than slavery:
"Okay, the president was dishonest, but it is kinda weird that if this is the worst law known to mankind, so many people feel the need to stretch the truth to attack it," Stewart said. "If something is genuinely bad, just telling the truth should be sufficient. There's a reason 12 Years a Slave doesn't have vampires and zombies, it doesn't need them."
Also, maybe everyone should take a step back and remember that the insurance system before Obamacare wasn't all that great. "Seriously man, the fucking health insurance system before sucked," Stewart said, and aired clips of people getting their policies dropped over spider bites, and bankrupted by six-figure medical bills. So let's hold off on taking away slavery's title as the worst thing to ever happen in America.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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