It is also about 90% improbable that we can have affordable health care while insurance companies are given a seat at the table when fixing the health care laws.
The reason people so widely support universal healthcare is because of insurance company shenanigans to begin with. I think Obama didn't want to be the heavy and step on corporate toes, which would not be fun for the president. His solution was to bring the problem into the solution. But you just can't get rid of the problem by making the problem the solution.
Obama wanted healthcare to be a part of his legacy, but he wanted it on his resume so bad that he was ready to trick Americans into an inferior product, something that was not at all remotely like the universal health care that the country was expecting. People opened their arms to Obama when he showed interest in addressing the problem. The country had finally reached a critical mass that would embrace European style universal coverage, and the debates in Washington, along with the payoffs from insurance companies to key members of congress, began to take place. Yeah, the Republicans opposed Obama and healthcare and the Democrats supported it (at least when in front of TV crews).
And when the future for Average Americans started looking brighter and the country was finally chanting, "Healthcare! Healthcare", the Democrats pulled a bait and switch, and instead of creating universal healthcare, passed a law forcing everyone to buy insurance from insurance companies (Remember insurance companies? They were the companies that were consuming American paychecks, sometimes at a rate higher than a home mortgage). I remember that turning point when people began to understand what was really coming to them. Obama defended the Democrats new direction by claiming universal health care was only one small part of a health care bill. He was in Montana at a town hall meeting with Montana Senator, Max Baucus (D), who had received something like 1.5 million dollars from the health care industry over the years. He also chaired a vital committee that the bill would have to get through.
One small part of health care? Well maybe, if an only IF universal coverage actually represented 5%, rather than 90% of what people thought they were getting. In fact, it wasn't one small part, but Obama reinforced the impression of the insignificance of universal coverage by making the "itty bitty" sign between his thumb and forefinger.
But universal coverage isn't "one small part." It's basically the totality of the thing, not some insignificant "teeny weeny". However, short term (the next 7 or 8 years), Obama received a personal benefit. Health care! At last! Some people called it a baby step on the way to real universal coverage and hailed Obama as getting ball rolling, but it wasn't a baby step as much as a tactic to reinforce an already failed system. It was a step backwards that actually undermines the concept of national healthcare, and will set healthcare back another 30 years and make it that much harder to pass the next time, when people (and politicians) remember the bitter taste left in their mouths from ACA and how poorly received a "healthcare" bill could be.