Why Does Sebelius Still Have a Job?

Tom Bevan
Real Clear Politics

…Sebelius’ department had 3½ years to prepare to implement the Affordable Care Act. No one ever suggested that commandeering one-sixth of the American economy would be an easy task. (Many Republicans suggested the opposite and were dismissed as killjoys for their efforts.) But after the debacle of the last two weeks, liberals and Democrats—not conservatives or Republicans—should be calling for Sebelius’s head.

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The administration’s handling of the implementation of Obamacare over the past three years has been a slow-moving train wreck: a mixture of embarrassing delays, hard-to-justify waivers, and assorted bad news about the unintended consequences of the law. Some of this was Sebelius’s fault, some of it was not.

The crowning blunder came 10 days ago with the rollout of healthcare.gov website, the centerpiece of the administration’s effort to sign individuals up for coverage through the government-run health care exchanges that are at the heart of the legislation. To say this was vitally important to the overall success of the law is an understatement. It is the aspect of Obamacare that the president himself has said is utterly essential—and backed up those words by letting the federal government shut down rather that give in to Republican demands to gut it. Nonetheless, its premiere was a giant flop – and Kathleen Sebelius is responsible.

The government’s website apparently cost more than $500 million to build—and counting. This is more than LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Spotify, and yet it has been a disaster from the get-go, freezing, crashing, and locking people out.

The administration’s line is that the website was overwhelmed by surprisingly strong demand, which they cast as a good thing. Programmers who peeked under the hood of the website scoffed at that assertion, saying that the site was so poorly constructed, so full of glitches and buggy code that it could never have supported even the most modest traffic levels. Some of that code was actually caused by spelling errors in Javascript.

Worse still, despite repeated warnings about the deficiency of the site, it apparently was not even taken out for a test drive before the administration launched the thing…

The complete article, with video, is at Real Clear Politics.


Related:   NYT: Obamacare Collapse ‘Has Deeply Embarrassed’ White House 

… The Times says those closest to the three-and-a-half year-long building of Obamacare, like embattled Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, ignored or quashed the myriad warning bells sounding all around them. On Tuesday, the Republican National Committee released a #FireSebelius web ad calling for Sebelius’s ousting.

“We foresee a train wreck,” one insurance executive working on Obamacare IT said in February. “We don’t have the IT specifications. The level of angst in health plans is growing by leaps and bounds. The political people in the administration do not understand how far behind they are.” …



Also, BEYOND ‘GLITCHES’: Obamacare Nightmare Just Beginning

“Train wreck.” “Fundamentally flawed.” “Not ready for primetime.” This is the rollout of Obamacare…Why don’t Republicans have a strategy to hammer this message every day?…



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