President Barack Obama’s career has always depended on an adoring left and a complicit media, neither of which will make a big deal of his inaccuracies and flip-flops. We saw it on his same-sex marriage switcheroo; now we’re seeing it on his recent support for government-run health care, misleadingly referred to as “Medicare for all”—“Medicaid for all,” or better yet “VA for all,” would be more accurate.
In his recent University of Illinois speech Obama said, “So, Democrats aren’t running on good old ideas like a higher minimum wage, they’re running on good new ideas like Medicare for all.”
So Medicare for all is a “good new idea,” even though President Harry Truman supported a similar idea in the late 1940s, and many liberals pushed for it when Congress passed Medicare for seniors in 1965.
Both Presidents Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton unsuccessfully tried to pass a major expansion of government in health care. And former Rep. John Conyers first introduced his “Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act” in 2003.
Also in 2003—six years before he became president—in a speech to the AFL-CIO, Obama said, “I happen to be a proponent of a single-payer, universal health care plan.”
So Obama considers an idea Democrats have been pushing for 65 years, and Obama himself has supported for more than 15 years, a “good new idea.”
But that’s only his recent stance. Like the issue of same-sex marriage, Obama’s flipped—twice.
As Zeke J. Miller wrote in Time magazine in 2015, Obama claimed he supported gay marriage when he ran for an Illinois state Senate seat in 1996. But when he was running for president in 2008 he said, “I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman.”
Then in 2012, he was back in favor of same-sex marriage, explaining he had “evolved.”
Well, he’s evolved again—on health care. After extolling himself a single-payer advocate in 2003, he claimed in March 2010, as he was trying to push through Obamacare, that while other countries had government-run health care systems, “in America it would be neither practical nor realistic.”
Apparently it’s both practical and realistic now, probably because Obamacare has been such an utter failure.
The complicit mainstream media will not hold him accountable for the way he and Democrats undermined the health insurance system, nor for his flip-flops. (At least the Washington Post identified some of those flip-flops in 2008.)
Had the media a shred of integrity, they would press Obama and Democrats on why, given their dismal track record reforming health care, anyone should trust their claim that Medicare for all will finally fix a health care system they broke.