Pelosi Gets Grilled Over False Obamacare Promises on 'Meet the Press'

November 17, 2013

NBC's Meet the Press host David Gregory took House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) to task Sunday for the failures of Obamacare and taped promises she made about the law.

Gregory played a clip from 2009 when the then-Speaker of the House essentially repeated President Obama's infamous "If you like your plan, you can keep your plan promise" in an interview with MSNBC's Ed Schultz.

While Obama has acknowledged he was wrong, Pelosi still couldn't bring herself to admit it.

"Are you accountable for saying something that turned out not to be correct?" Gregory asked.

"Well, it's not that it's not correct, it's that if you want to keep it and it's important for the insurance companies to say to people, this is what your plan does," she said. "It doesn't prevent you from being discriminated against on basis of pre-existing conditions."

Gregory didn't let up, though.

"The government has decided there have to be minimum standards in any health care plan. So if you have something and you like it and it doesn't meet what the government says you have to have, you cannot keep it. That's not what you said, though," he said.

"If you had your plan before the enactment of the law in 2010, if you had your plan -- there is nothing in the law that says -- we can go back and forth on this," she sputtered.

Pelosi returned to the Democratic talking point that the promise made referred to keeping plans they had before Obamacare was passed in 2010, but Obama continued to make that pledge in 2012 and as recently as late October 2013. Yet, Pelosi commended Obama for being forthright and taking responsibility for Obamacare's problems.

Also, Gregory played a clip of her much-criticized remarks that Obamacare needed to be passed in order to "find out what's in it," leading to this exchange:

DAVID GREGORY: And hasn't that idea that you have to pass it before you know what's in it, isn't that really the problem, as you look back on it, that there was such a rush to get this done, no Republicans voting for it, and now there are unintended effects of this that were foreseen at the time that you couldn't know the impact of it and now this is coming home to roost.

NANCY PELOSI: No. What I was saying there is, we are House and the Senate, we get a bill, we go to conference, we ping-pong it and then you see what the final product is. However, however, I stand by what I said there. When people see what is in the bill, they will like it, and they will. So while there's a lot of hoop-de-do and ado about what's happening, very appropriate. I'm not criticizing. I said it would take a great deal to pass this bill. I said, if we go up to the gate and it's locked, we'll unlock the gate. If we can't do that, we'll climb the fence. If the fence is too high, we'll pole vault in. If we can't do that, we'll helicopter but we'll get it done. We had to pass the test of the courts, and we did. The first rollout in the first part, the first year of the implementation went very smoothly. The website did not work. That has caused problems, complicating people transitioning from those policies. But again, this was never thought to be easy. And the fact is it doesn't matter what we're saying here. What matters is what happens at the kitchen table of the American people and how they will have more affordability, more accessibility, better quality care, prevention, wellness, a healthier nation honoring the vows of our founders. That life, a healthier life, liberty to pursue their happiness not be chained by a policy.

GREGORY: I understand what the arguments are. The administration is saying --

PELOSI: That's the only argument.