Not only could applicants not access the website which went online Oct. 1 but also there were many instances where the site totally crashed. As the first two or three weeks of Obamacare’s introduction dragged on, things seemed to get worse and worse. The contractors whom Health Secretary Sebelius had hired to create the website noted that they had warned the administration that the site was not ready for launch. Nevertheless, the President was determined that the October deadline would be met. The site was initially budgeted at 19 million dollars but the cost quickly skyrocketed to more than 600 million.
Republicans in Washington, who had been critical of the entire project, soon found that they had some Democratic support from lawmakers beginning to join them in criticizing the abortive launch.
Strangely enough, the launch date coincided with the government shutdown, which was largely caused by the Affordable Care Act. The intransigent President had stuck to his guns by saying he would not negotiate over the debt ceiling or get a “clean” funding bill from Congress devoid of Obamacare changes.
The winner in this whole fiasco may be Republican Senator Ted Cruz, who stood up for hours railing against the impending debacle that Obamacare was bound to cause. At the time, he was like a voice crying in the wilderness and was roundly castigated by Democrats, some Republicans and the mainstream media. Now that many of his prognostications have come to pass, he and Senator Mike Lee are being looked at in a different light. Both Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Democratic Senator Mike Manchin have announced that they will introduce legislation attempting to cure some of Obamacare’s filings. The main thrust of their laws is to give the individual mandate a year’s reprieve, such as the one that was given by Obama to employers.
As far as Secretary Sebelius is concerned, there are growing calls for her resignation from both sides of the aisle. It is also interesting to note that Sebelius is the same person who violated the Hatch Act in Obama’s last campaign, but received little or no admonishment.
She is typical of the administration’s protection of wrongdoers such as Attorney General Eric Holder, who is the only AG ever to be held in contempt of Congress over his refusal to give testimony regarding the “fast and furious” scandal. In fact, the President himself used Executive privilege to protect Holder from answering Congressional questions.
Currently, the Administration is scrambling to hire computer savvy guys in an effort to get its website going. How much more will that cost?
Harry Spencer is a long-time northern Nevada resident.