Washington (CNN) – House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said Sunday neither she nor President Barack Obama misled the American people when they said, during the run-up to the passage of Obamacare, that people could keep their health insurance plans.
Pelosi clarified their remarks, saying they only meant people could keep their plans if they had already signed up before Obama signed the bill in 2010.
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"(Obama is) gracious and he's taking responsibility,” Pelosi said on NBC’s “Meet The Press.” “But that doesn't mean there's anything in the law that said if you like what you had before 2010, you couldn't keep it."
The Affordable Care Act allows for people to keep their health plans if they had signed up before the bill was enacted - but not after.
The president repeatedly said during the campaign for health care reform that if people liked their insurance plans they could keep them.
Following many health plan cancellation notices – a million in California alone – Obama told the American people Thursday he’s responsible for not having been clear.
“I completely get how upsetting this can be for a lot of Americans, particularly after assurances they heard from me that if they had a plan that they liked, they could keep it. And to those Americans, I hear you loud and clear,” Obama said.
The President offered a short-term fix, allowing people who have had plans canceled to remain on them for an additional year.
On Friday, the House passed a bill, with bipartisan support, allowing people to stay on their plans permanently. It’s unclear whether that bill will have a chance to move forward or if Obama might even veto it if it passed in the Senate.
The fumbling – Obama’s word - rollout of Obamacare may take a toll on Democratic prospects in next year’s midterm elections, even though the party came out on top in opinion polls following a government shutdown last month. That shutdown now seems like a distant memory.
"I don't think you can tell what will happen next year, but I will tell you this: Democrats stand tall in support of the Affordable Care Act,” Pelosi said.
“What's important about it is that the American people get served, not who gets re-elected.”