Watch CBS News

Gov. Baker Fires Jonathan Gruber From Mass. Health Connector Board

BOSTON (CBS) - Gov. Charlie Baker has demanded and received the resignations of four members of the state Health Connector board, including MIT Professor Jonathan Gruber, who touched off a national uproar late last year with videotaped comments about misleading marketing of the Affordable Care Act and derogatory remarks about the intelligence of the American people.

Gruber was appointed to the board in 2006 by then Governor Mitt Romney and re-appointed by Governor Deval Patrick. The other three board members asked to resign - John Bertko, Rick Jakious and George Gonser - were all original Patrick appointees.

Keller @ Large: Gruber Apologizes For Comments

In a letter, Gov. Baker thanked them for their service "and for agreeing to resign from that board."

"As with all incoming administrations, I am establishing a new leadership team and I have instructed those individuals to take a fresh look at the Connector and to implement ideas to improve the operation of that important state entity," Baker said.

The move will give Baker appointees majority control of the Connector board, which had become a lightning-rod for consumer complaints about the failure of the once-vaunted online health-care marketplace to transition to the more complex requirements of ObamaCare.

Gruber became the focus of national controversy last fall when a string of videos emerged showing the professor boasting about deceptive tactics used in the drafting and marketing of the federal health reform, including one video in which Gruber said ObamaCare was constructed in a "tortured way" to mask the fact that it works by having "healthy people pay in and sick people get money."

Gruber said this sleight-of-hand was required to win passage by sidestepping "the stupidity of the American voter."

Called on the carpet by Congress at a hearing last December, Gruber apologized for what he called "glib, thoughtless, and sometimes downright insulting" comments.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.