President Obama did not mince words as he defended Obamacare and the process that got us there. He chastised those who are trying to repeal the bill in a manner that sliced deep with a sharp knife; he made the piercing intellectual argument about how one makes progress.
President Obama did what he does best. He made those opposing Universal Healthcare and Obamacare seem as petty and valueless as they are.
The former President first belittled America's healthcare controversy that shouldn't be one.
Over the past eight years, thousands upon thousands of Americans threw themselves into the collective effort of reforming our health care system. Those of you who live in countries that already have universal health care are trying to figure out what's the controversy here. I am too.
Obama then made it clear that Obamacare was no backdoor deal. It took input from all voices.
The folks who did the work, it wasn't just policy wonks, it wasn't just politicians. It was moms and dads, people who had experience with a sick child, or crushing medical bills that threatened to bankrupt them, maybe a parent who was lost to cancer that had that person gotten a regular checkup might have been caught earlier. And those voices from every walk of life, from every corner of the country, against all odds, made a difference.
President Obama then pointed out what Obamacare accomplished.
For the first time, more than ninety percent of Americans know the security of health insurance. Paying more for insurance, or being denied insurance because of a preexisting condition or because you are a woman, that's not a thing anymore. We got rid of that. People are alive today because of it. That's progress.
He then made it clear that the bill had deficiencies that need fixing.
Now the legislation that we passed was full of things that still need to be fixed. It wasn't perfect. But it was better.
Obama then hit Trump and the GOP without naming them for their attempt to destroy real health care on pretenses.
So when I see people trying to undo that hard-won progress, for the 50th or 60th time with bills that will raise costs, or reduce coverage, or roll back protections for older Americans or people with pre-existing conditions, the cancer survivor, the expecting mother, or the child with autism or asthma for whom coverage once again would be almost unattainable. It is aggravating. And all of this being done without any demonstrable economic, or actuarial, or plain common sense rationale, it frustrates. And it certainly frustrating to have to mobilize every couple months to keep our leaders from inflicting real human suffering on our constituents.
The former president then provided the silver lining. Progress is a process that one must continue to feed.
But typically that's how progress is won. And how progress is maintained. On every issue, we have to stand up for each other, recognize that progress is never inevitable, that it often can be fragile, it's in need of constant renewal, and our individual progress and our collective progress depends on our willingness to roll up our sleeves and work.
President Obama hits back on Obamacare
Those three minutes were powerful when analyzed. Some may not have captured it in real time. But it gets the point across immediately and even better when digested.
Also published on Medium.