Former President Clinton advocated against any delays on “ready” parts of Obamacare while acknowledging that the Affordable Care Act isn’t going to become popular anytime soon.
“It won’t get any more popular, because the Republicans don’t want the government to be able to help make health care both available and more affordable. It violates their ideology. So nothing is going to happen in this next year on the issues still to be resolved in terms of implementation that would change that,” Clinton told PBS.
“The only thing that will change public opinion is when it works. And we do know, from what we have seen so far, that the cost of insurance for modest-income people might be as much little as $100 a month. We do know, based on what we have seen so far, that, in the aggregate, the insurance premiums are coming in at 20 percent below their estimated cost, even by the Congressional Budget Office.”
Clinton added “for all of the attacks on health care, it is less unpopular than President Bush’s Medicare drug program was when it started.”
“And there were horrible problems with the implementation. The Democrats didn’t try to repeal it, even though most of them voted against it. Instead, they tried to make it work,” he continued.
“That’s what you do with a law. We tried to help. So the members of Congress should be doing what the Democrats who voted against the drug program did. They should be telling their citizens how it works and how to make the most of it. And that’s what the administration should do. And that’s what we’re going to try to do.”
Clinton’s presidential library in Arkansas will be helping people enroll. “That’s what everybody should do. It’s the law,” he added.
The ex-president said he was surprised at Hillary Clinton’s recent admission that she’s wrestling with the idea of running for president.
“We don’t need a four-year presidential campaign. It’s amazing how much longer they are now. She doesn’t have to declare now or in three months or six months,” he said. “I just want her to be happy. And I think she will make a better decision about this political issue if she’s — everything is going well in her life. That’s what I think. So, we’re not nearly as political as everybody thinks we are. We don’t sit around all the time talking about this.”
“We swim in the late afternoon every day. And if either one of us even mentions a political topic, we will stop the other one and just talk about the weather or whatever.”