White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney threw the promise that was made by none other than President Donald Trump himself.
“We don’t have universal ― the only way to have universal care, if you stop to think about it, is to force people to buy it under penalty of law,” Mulvaney said Sunday on ABC’s “This Week.”
“We’re going to have insurance for everybody,” Trump said in January. “There was a philosophy in some circles that if you can’t pay for it, you don’t get it. That’s not going to happen with us.”
Last week, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer started to add caveats to Trump’s promise, saying it was less of a promise and more of a “goal.” He said Trump’s plan would create lower costs and give “more people the option to have health care.”
“Everybody has a choice to get it,” Spicer added, “and I think that’s what we want to do is give everyone who wants to get health care the financial ability to get it.”
Mulvaney, said that “insurance for everybody” is impossible, since Republicans refuse to put in place a mandate to buy insurance.“What you’ve got now is we’re forcing people to buy it under Obamacare under penalty of law and people are still looking for a way not to buy it,” he said. “So clearly the government mandate doesn’t work. The better process, the better function is exactly what we’re trying to do now, which is to encourage people and enable them to buy a policy they want and can afford.”
“The only way to get truly universal care is to throw people in jail if they don’t have it. And we are not going to do that,” Mulvaney added.
Obamacare actually specifically bars the federal government from throwing anyone in jail if they don’t purchase health insurance. People do face a tax penalty, but the law also says the IRS can’t use liens or levies on property as enforcement tools.