To show solidarity with the millions of people being harmed by his health care law, President Barack Obama signed up for Obamacare shortly before Christmas.
Well, Obama didn't personally sign up. His aides did on his behalf. But at least this shows that the Obamacare website's technical problems have been overcome, right? Wrong. The aides had to sign him up through an in-person enrollment.
A White House spokesman told The Associated Press that the “complicated nature of the president's case required an in-person sign-up,” saying the president's personal information isn't readily available in government databases due to security issues, making it impossible for the exchange website to verify his identity and eligibility for tax subsidies.
Obama selected (or, more accurately, his aides selected) a “bronze” plan, the cheapest available. Obama won't qualify for subsidies and will therefore pay nearly $400 per month for the plan. But at least the president will now experience the costs and narrower provider networks facing other citizens enrolled in Obamacare plans, right? Wrong again.
As commander in chief, Obama gets his health care through the military. In other words, he will actually get to keep his doctors. He doesn't plan to use his Obamacare plan. Neither do his wife and daughters; Obama didn't bother to have his aides enroll them in a plan.
White House officials called the enrollment a “symbolic” act. True that. Nothing better symbolizes (and makes the case against) Obamacare than watching its chief proponent and namesake find himself unable to use the system without help from aides, to buy insurance he doesn't need and doesn't plan to use, at an increased cost of $400 per month, with no real benefit.
To recall Bill Clinton's famous claim, at least Obama can say he feels our pain. Or at least his aides do.