White House playing 'loose and free' with ObamaCare numbers?

This is a rush transcript from "Your World," January 17, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.


REP. GREGG HARPER, R-MISS.: The most important number, as has been reported by many news outlets is whether individuals have paid. the administration collect this information? I'm just asking, do they -- do you collect this information?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right now, we're not, but we will be.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As soon as that functionality is built.

HARPER: So we don't know at this point how many people have actually paid for coverage?



NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: All right. I'm a little slow here, but that means essentially that the White House really does have no idea for the time being how many people have actually paid for ObamaCare.

To the man asking these questions, Mississippi Republican Gregg Harper.

Because that's a big distinction, as you pointed out, Congressman. And it's one thing for folks to sign up. It's quite another thing for folks to pay it because technically, you don't -- like it's when I go to Amazon.com or pick out items. They might be in the cart, but until I purchase them, I -- I don't have them.

HARPER: That's right, Neil, or you can just leave the shopping cart right here on the aisle and walk out...

CAVUTO: Exactly.

HARPER: ... which a lot of people are doing.

But it is beyond comprehension that something this massive and that has been all -- been the law for more than three years, they can't even tell me how many people have paid.


CAVUTO: Well, what if they actually know, but they're just not telling you because it's not good?

HARPER: Well, they're -- Neil, that's a great point, and certainly that's -- you have got to think that they're not going tell us anything that doesn't look good, and the numbers have been less than desirable.

Even those that they have kind of leaked it or told us are still not what they wanted them to be, and they continue to call things like the disaster of the rollout a glitch. Well, it's much more disastrous than a glitch. And they -- they have tried to downplay the negative info.

And all we want are the facts and the truth and it just -- it seems to be difficult to get to.

CAVUTO: I understand it's human nature to -- to sort of get out the good news or leak it out and hide the bad news or never get it out.

But I -- what worries me about this is that protests on the part of those who still stand by the law and think it's very, very good -- Steny Hoyer among them just the other day on this very show, Congressman, saying, Neil, in six months, we even won't remember any this, that we will be off to the races. I'm -- I'm paraphrasing. But the gist of it was that the health care law will be well on its way to being very popular and being very appreciated by Americans.

What do you think of that?

HARPER: Well, Neil, I think that that's what we would -- used to call wishful thinking, because the people that call us and have been notified of either their policy being canceled, even after the president said that they could keep it, period, if they liked it, and -- or -- or the fact that they're getting increases in their deductible, decreases in the level of coverage, and it's costing them a fortune of money they need to spend on their family, there's nothing that is going to be good about that in six months.


CAVUTO: By the way, while I have got you here, this other -- I'm sorry, sir -- the dust-up about whether insurance companies, if they ever pushed to a corner like banks were before the meltdown or after the meltdown, that Republicans would stand in lockstep against bailing them out, even though they were largely in lockstep about bailing the banks out then, you wouldn't do it with insurance companies now, is that right?

HARPER: I don't see a real mood to do that.

But you can also see a shift in this administration of beginning to play the blame game, to say, well, if the coverage got dropped, it's really the insurance company's fault. And once again, that's not a true statement.

CAVUTO: All right.

HARPER: But we will see how this shakes out. But, right now, they're playing very loose and free with the numbers. And that includes just about every category you have to consider to be suspect.

CAVUTO: All right. It was a very revealing session today. Thank you, Congressman. I appreciate it.

HARPER: Thanks, Neil. Great to be with you.

CAVUTO: All right.

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