President Obama promised that his health insurance exchanges would make all of our lives better. In exchange for forcing us to buy insurance, Obama promised that his new government-run markets would be simple, one-stop-shops for quality, affordable coverage.
He was wrong.
Instead, Americans are stuck with websites that don’t work and health plans they can’t possibly afford. Those who do have insurance are getting cancellation notices, and those that don’t can’t find affordable coverage.
On Monday, President Obama said, “No one is madder than me” about the website’s countless failures. The tough questions continued on Tuesday for White House Spokesman Jay Carney and became so difficult that he abruptly left the press conference. The White House is blaming HHS and denying responsibility. The American people are witnessing in real time what happens when big government takes over healthcare.
Here are some Obamacare blunders so far:
- CBS News reports a huge spike in people enrolling in Medicaid rather than buying private health insurance. Not only does this add to the unsustainable costs of that entitlement program, it shrinks the pool of healthy people the insurance exchanges require.
- According to the Washington Post, even state bureaucrats are confounded by Obamacare’s endless technical glitches. While HHS is trying to claim the website is improving, insurance commissioners responsible for overseeing insurance industries in states relying on the federal government to run health-care exchanges still cannot get answers to their desperate phone calls to Washington.
- CBS News reported that a “shop and browse” feature that was added to the Obamacare website in order to offer customers the ability to see premium price estimates prior to creating an account is wildly inaccurate and misleading. It often underestimates actual premiums by over 50%.
- According to Kaiser Health News, 300,000 Floridians received insurance coverage cancellation letters from Florida Blue. That is 80% of their individual policy holders in the state.
- Consumer Reports magazine, which has supported Obamacare since 2009, suggested to readers that due to privacy concerns, everyone should “[S]tay away from Healthcare.gov for at least another month if you can.” Their software tester opined, “Hopefully, that will be long enough for its software vendors to clean up the mess they’ve made.”
- On Sean Hannity’s radio show, Sean called the Obamacare hotline on air and asked the representative on the phone about call volume along with other questions. Just days later, the operator was fired for being honest about the glitches in the program.
- According to Politico, because the White House knew the Federal exchange website disaster would be investigated by House Republicans, the Administration had a “bunker mentality” and only sought advice from partisan “trusted campaign tech experts.”
- The New York Times reported contractors and specialists have said fixing the site’s problems soon is “unrealistic,” as “more than 5 five million lines of software code may need to be rewritten before the web site runs properly.”
- The Washington Examiner discovered that CGI Federal, the Canadian firm which designed the Obamacare health insurance exchange website, was given a no bid contract for the work.
- According to Millward Brown Digital research firm, the Obamacare exchange website had an estimated 9.47 million unique visitors during the first week. Of those visitors, 3.72 million started the registration process, but only 1 million completed registration. Only 36,000 completed enrollment. CNBC’s initial report showed 99% of Obamacare applicants “hit a wall.”
- Chad Henderson of Georgia, who became the media’s poster boy as one of the few to actually sign up for Obamacare, lied about his success, according to a Reason Magazine investigation. On LinkedIn, Henderson lists himself as a volunteer for Organizing for Action.
- On Bloomberg TV, Office of Management and Budget Director Sylvia Burwell has refused to guarantee that the Obamacare website will be fixed by December 15, even though the individual mandate goes into effect that same month.
- Even prominent Democrats admit the website is a disaster. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi told ABC News that the Obamacare website glitches are “unacceptable.” On MSNBC, former White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs said he believes people should be fired.
- Reporters at CNN and MSNBC have tried and failed to sign up for Obamacare while on the air.
- The Hill reports that states are already facing a serious threat of identity theft, as fake insurance exchange websites are being launched by cyber criminals trying to steal private information. This issue of fraud with Obamacare has also taken place over the phone, with scammers calling up individuals claiming to be government representatives and requesting personal information. The lack of uniformity in state exchange websites only adds to the endless confusion.
- Finally, Secretary Kathleen Sebelius dug in her heels amid calls to resign, telling reporters that she doesn’t work for the people who are upset about Obamacare’s failures.
This is exactly what conservatives warned would happen. Government just simply isn’t competent enough to run America’s health care system, and it never will be. Our constitution established a government that is supposed to carry out a few basic functions and no more. The government has no business running a health insurance marketplace or any other function that was supposed to be left to the private sector. It’s a shame that Americans have to learn this lesson in such a painful way.