Oct 23 2013

House Democrats Freak Out Over Healthcare.gov Status Briefing

Published by at 2:43 pm under Obamacare

Want to know how bad the ObamaCare website is doing? After House Democrats got a special insight briefing from the administration on the situation, the House Dems promptly freaked out!

“It’s screwed up,” Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) said, summing up the whole situation.

House Democrats raised several concerns with Cohen, including whether the personal information going into the system is secure and what is being done to reach uninsured people who don’t have Internet access. And they demanded more specific answers to what’s wrong.

“If they have it, they’re not giving the number out,”said Rep. Michael Michaud (D-Maine). “We’re just tired of anecdotal answers to some of the problems.”

More here:

“I think the president needs to man up, find out who was responsible and fire them,” Rep. Richard Nolan, D-Minn., said after the briefing. He said Obama should tell Democrats when the problems will be fixed so they can prepare to move on. “You don’t get many second chances to get a good first impression.”

Nolan wasn’t the only one.

“Somebody should be held accountable,” said Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Calif. “Absolutely.”

So clearly the briefing was not even close to Rosy and Happy. If so them Democrats would be preening and crowing!

And if the Obamacare news was marginal, Dems would have come out and put a happy face on the discussions.

But House Dems did neither. They are exhibiting barely controlled anger instead. They see the stakes. They see the low probability of pulling out of this tail spin. They see the ever increasing likelihood that the administration so botched this roll out it will be the one that puts the stake through Obamacare.

Why? Becuase more people are losing insurance than getting signed up!

House Speaker John A. Boehner predicted Wednesday that by the end of the month, more Americans will have lost their insurance by being kicked off existing health plans than the number who were able to sign up in the flawed online healthcare.gov website.

And the early numbers may back him up.

Color me unsurprised. I have been around too many of these hopelessly damaged federal programs. The fact is they cannot fix this mess in weeks, given it took years to create. Healthcare.gov was DOA on Oct 1. And so far all efforts at resuscitation have failed.

And will continue to fail. These high level managers called in are not going to be able to fix this until they scrap what they have and start over. Hell, it will take them weeks to just get up to speed, and to do so will divert those trying to work the fixes.

But one special wording I have seen over and over again tells me they are still just trying to understand what is going on.  They see the symptoms, but don’t understand the root issues. The wording I see [paraphrasing here] reflects the need to instrument, monitor and identify the problems. No one claims to have the major problems identified and work plans established. No one is even coming close to having an inkling of how long before it is fixed to some minimum baseline capability.

As long as a minimum baseline capability and milestone date are not forthcoming, you can assume they are still hopelessly lost.

This is not new to federal SW programs. CMS was in WAY over their heads, and demonstrated once again technical novices cannot manage large technical programs. They can write policy, but they cannot implement the systems to make them happen.

Why should I be surprised?

Update: Ouch – CNN calls for an ObamaCare Do-Over?

“Tech surge” or no tech surge, CNN reports that still more experts and computer engineers are piling on to the suggestion that fixing HealthCare.Gov’s major problems before the end of 2013 just isn’t a feasible task, and that rebuilding the system from scratch would be the administration’s easiest and safest bet:

President “Mulligan” should be quite used to this given how much golf he plays. But as I have been saying for weeks: this ain’t going to get right any time soon.

“We don’t even know where all of the problems lie, so how can we solve them?” Bhalla said. “It’s like a drive-by shooting: You’re going fast and you might hit it, you might miss it. But you can’t fix what you can’t identify.” …

4 responses so far

4 Responses to “House Democrats Freak Out Over Healthcare.gov Status Briefing”

  1. momdear1 says:

    Obama has done more to reverse the civil rights advances of his people than white racist could ever have done. He has reinforced the stereo type that all blacks are dumb, inept, and inadequate. His ill designed Health Care Plan, which has premiums higher than most people’s income, and deductibles so high most people may as well not have any insurance at all, Is a perfect example of what happens when you put people who haven’t a clue about anything in charge. Our government agencies, due to affirmative action which put the less than most qualified into executive level jobs, are now staffed with such people. It’s little wonder the USA is now on the bottom in everything and world leaders are running from us. As for this so this rigger nigged health care plan, all it needs to fix it is a little more chewing gum and bailing wire. If they can’t find bailing wire they can use a wire coat hanger. Isn’t that how they fix everything?

  2. Mike M. says:

    I think we’re seeing why the GOP folded on the continuing resolution.

    Obamacare is now The Only Big Story. It’s failure the biggest disaster since Pearl Harbor.

    And the Democrats own 100.00% of it. The GOP can honestly say they did their utmost to stop it.

    The Dems have chosen their rope, tested its strength, tied the knot, and inserted their heads. It remains to be seen if the GOP has the nerve to do what remains.

  3. lurker9876 says:

    What do you think that the Republicans need to do what remains? How should the Republicans message at this point now that the Democrats are beginning to crack.

    Pelosi has got to be one of the most stupid women on earth.

  4. Mike M. says:

    Why, kick the chair out from under the Dems.

    The lines of attack are:
    1. Obamacare was a Bad Idea. The Democrats are the Party of Bad Ideas.
    2. Obamacare was a Very Bad Idea, even by the low standards of the Party of Bad Ideas. This makes Obama a Person of Very Bad Judgement, and the Democrats not only the Bad Idea Party, but the Incompetent Party.
    3. The GOP tried to stop this disaster every inch of the way. This makes them the Responsible Party Fighting For America.
    4. The Democrats have LONG been the Bad Idea Party. The GOP makes mistakes (and if you want to say Bush the Younger was one, we won’t argue), but learns from them. The Democrats double down on incompetence and failure. Therefore, the Democrats must NEVER have control of the Government.