It is correct, according to the AP’s count, that 4.7 million people received a letter saying that their insurance was canceled. From a political perspective, perhaps it does not matter if the transition to another plan was seamless; they still got a cancellation letter, contrary to the president’s famous pledge. But that does not mean that the 4.7 million figure can be easily compared to the number of people signing up for coverage via the exchanges.
Of these three statements, Barrasso gets the closest to framing it correctly. But it is still a question of apples and oranges because listeners might still be left with the mistaken impression that most people with canceled policies ended up with no health insurance…
This is one of those cases where the exact phrasing could make a big difference in the Pinocchio rating. The Daily Caller article by itself would merit Four Pinocchios, while the actual phrasing of Boehner’s tweet is technically correct but a misleading accounting of apples and oranges. In linking to an obviously mistaken article, Boehner compounds any misunderstandings about the point of his tweet.
Moreover, it is worth remembering the enrollment period is only at the halfway point, so the data are incomplete. If Republicans are trying to claim that more people lost private insurance than gained it under Obamacare, the jury is still out and the verdict won’t be in until April 1.