In an interview with NBC News on Thursday, President Politico.com.apologized to those Americans who have received cancellation notices for their insurance policies, reports
“I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation based on assurances they got from me,” the president said in the interview.
President Obama is trying to clamp down on the negative media spin that he “lied” to Americans by saying consistently over the last two years, “If you are satisfied with your plan, then you get to keep it.”
That has not been the case.
Lawmakers confronted the Obama administration last month with a wave of cancellation notices hitting small businesses and individuals who buy their own insurance.
At the same time, the federal official closest to the website apologized for its dysfunction in new sign-ups and asserted things are getting better by the day.
Medicare chief Marilyn Tavenner said it’s not the administration but insurers who are responsible for cancellation letters now reaching many of the estimated 14 million people who buy individual policies. And, officials said, people who get cancellation notices will be able to find better replacement plans, in some cases for less.
But that wasn’t the promise that was made, and President Obama is trying to rectify the situation as his approval rating sits right at 40 percent.
Read more from Politico:
Obama has ordered his policy aides to draw up an administrative fix for the problem, a White House official said Thursday night. The president alluded to the move during the interview, saying “I’ve assigned my team to see what we can do to close some of the holes and gaps in the law.”
The fix is an attempt by the White House to move past an issue that’s damaged the president’s credibility and sparked outrage among Democrats and Republicans. Lawmakers have offered bills to deal with the dropped policies, but those efforts are likely to get bogged down in the divisive politics of Obamacare, which is why the White House is looking at an administrative fix.
“That’s something that we’re gonna do everything we can to get fixed,” Obama said.
But Obama made clear he doesn’t think he lied in what he’d been saying over the past few years.
“I meant what I said. We worked hard to try to make sure we implemented it properly. Obviously we didn’t do a good enough job,” he said.
“We weren’t as clear as we needed to be in terms of the changes that were taking place” in messaging before the insurance companies started taking action this fall, he added.
See interview clip below: