PolitiFact has updated its post rating Hugh Hewitt’s assertion of the Obamacare death spiral False. PolitiFact continues the argument by addressing Hugh’s tweets and reiterates its rating of his statement as False. As Hugh indicated to us, PolitiFact says it contacted Hugh yesterday at noon by email to Hugh’s booker. PolitiFact posts a screenshot of the email to Hugh’s booker in the update.
Glad to see they covered their rear end with an email to my booker on a Sunday afternoon at 12:06 with a deadline of 3:00, not bothering to tweet to me — I was on The Acela and tweeting the entire three-hour period. (Indeed I believe I had an extended exchanges with Politico’s Shane Goldmacher, the New Yorker’s Ryan Lizza and RedState’s Jay Caruso during that three-hour window. Any causal check of my Twitter feed would have shown this and could have alerted the “reporter” to my easy availability.)
Nor does their response to the original exchange on Meet the Press include recounting my aside to Joy Reid acknowledging that “Joy disagrees with this” or to the fact that they are “fact checking” Aetna’s president. Any serious attempt to alert a reader to the truth or falsity of my assertion would have noted both as well as the fact that Aetna’s president is an expert witness. PolitiFact original post also ignored my reference to the New York Times’s appraisal of Obamacare which lists its many “failures” as well as successes.
My primary piece of evidence after Aetna’s president’s statement was also omitted by PolitiFact: single-plan counties have gone from 7 percent of the country to 33 percent in one year. This represents a death spiral.
Had they waited to talk to me, or done cursory research, they would also have learned I served as General Counsel and then Deputy Director of OPM from 1986 to early 1989 with major oversight responsibility for the FEHB and that the idea of adverse selection has been around a long time. The attempt to claim an “industry standard” on what “death spiral” means is simply fallacious. There are many opinions on what it means. I agree with that of Aetna’s president.
PolitiFact is a liberal-agenda-driven group of classically lefty “journalists” masquerading as a non-partisan evaluators of arguments. In this case their defense of their “journalism” rests on a partial and biased recounting of a 10:20 a.m. Meet the Press roundtable discussion, one which omits my stated acknowledgment of a differing argument therein, and their discounting of the expert testimony of a major insurance company president, along with a Sunday afternoon three-hour “deadline” window for response following a perfunctory email to a booker of a show that runs Monday through Friday, when the host is himself online and answering a journalists’ questions and comments.
The reader can decide whether PolitiFact was interested in the facts of the death spiral — which is real and accelerating — or quickly rising to the defense of a liberal talking point. Drive-by lefty agenda “journalism” at its best and worst. A sham. A joke. And an admission against interest that it was so rushed and the reporter so indifferent to actually engaging in the conversation.
Power Line rates Hugh’s response True.