Exclusive-Rep. Lee Terry: Healthcare.gov-Are Things Worse than They Seem?

Exclusive-Rep. Lee Terry: Healthcare.gov-Are Things Worse than They Seem?

When automatic weapons were smuggled across the border into the waiting hands of drug cartels, the Obama Administration refused to turn over to Congress documents that would detail who knew what and when about Operation Fast and Furious.

When a planned terrorist attack resulted in the murder of U.S. diplomatic personnel in Libya, the Obama Administration sent the U.N. Ambassador Rice on the Sunday shows to lie to the American people.

When the President was campaigning for passage of his health care plan, he assured the American people that under his “reform” if you like your plan, you can keep your plan. 

When the Administration launched healthcare.gov on October 1, 2013, they did so despite the fact that their own Chief Information Security Officer recommended denying the authority to operate healthcare.gov due to security risks.

Knowing your information was vulnerable and ignoring internal security requirements, the Obama Administration went live with healthcare.gov, placing more value on political expediency than on protecting the best interests of your personal and private information. 

Time and again, this Administration has proven that it cannot be trusted. 

Which is why they no longer should be allowed to pick and choose what information to share with Congress and when – especially when it comes to the condition of working families’ health care coverage.

That’s why Congress is taking action this week to restore some much-needed check-and-balance on behalf of the American people.

No longer should we have to wait for the Administration to cherry-pick what information they want to release, skewing the data and facts to bolster their political standing.

On Friday, the House of Representatives will vote on H.R. 3362, the Exchange Information Disclosure Act, which requires the Administration to submit to Congress, and make available to Governors, state Insurance Commissioners, and the American people weekly reports which disclose what’s working, what’s broken, who’s fixing it, and how much will it cost.

This includes a state-by-state breakdown of unique website visits, individuals who create an account, how many individuals successfully enroll in a qualified health plan or Medicaid, a detailed description of problems identified with website functionality, actions taken to address those problems, and a list of all navigators and certified application counselors that have been trained and certified by the exchanges. 

Right now, we are all flying blind.

You can’t cure something until you diagnose it – policymakers and the American people deserve a full and complete picture of the real-time condition of healthcare.gov.

I’m hopeful that my colleagues on the other side of the aisle will agree and join with House Republicans to support this common-sense transparency measure. 

Put it this way; if things are working as well as the Administration would lead us to believe, this bill will allow them to broadcast those successes every week. But if the progress the Administration says they are making is exaggerated, we have a right to know in real-time what really is happening so we can start fixing it.

The alternative is waiting for the Administration to tell us. Ask yourself, how much do you trust them to tell us the truth, the whole truth…

Rep. Lee Terry (R-Nebraska) is a senior member of the Energy and Commerce Committee and the author of H.R. 3362, the Exchange Information Disclosure Act.


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