Is it possible that things really still can get worse for supporters of Obamacare, the president’s signature accomplishment, the law that was voted through by only Democrats during a lame-duck session of Congress?
Decide for yourself.
On Monday, White House spokesman Jay Carney admitted the law is killing off health insurance policies that Americans currently hold, and NBC reported that the administration knew that was what would happen as long as three years ago.
At least two different investigations are being launched by Congress, a commentary showed that even the paper signup process for Obamacare doesn’t work, and Alaska simply gave up – canceling signups because virtually no one was participating.
Carney’s comments camed in response to a question from journalist Ed Henry.
He asked, “The president, when he was trying to get the law passed, repeatedly said, if you currently have health insurance you will be able to keep your plan. This morning David Axelrod was pressed on that point and said, the majority – the vast majority – will be able to keep their plans. He no longer works at the White House. From the podium, will you admit that when [the] president said, if you have a plan, you’ll get to keep it, that that was not true?”
“After some throat clearing, Carney said, “So it’s true there are existing health care plans on the individual market that do not meet those minimum standards and therefore do not qualify for the Affordable Care Act,'” reported the Weekly Standard.
A short time later, NBC reported that four sources “deeply involved” in Obamacare confirmed that 50 to 75 percent of the 14 million consumers “who buy their insurance individually can expect to receive a ‘cancellation’ letter…”
And NBC, which largely has been supportive of Obama’s agenda, said that the Obama administration “has known that for at least three years.”
NBC cited an estimate “buried in Obamacare regulations from July 2010″ that said 40 to 67 percent of customers will not be able to keep their policy.”
“That means the administration knew that more than 40 to 67 percent of those in the individual market would not be able to keep their plans, even if they liked them,” the report said.
The result of the Obama administration’s work is hitting Americans like an earthquake. NBC reported that George Schwab, 62, of North Carolina, had a Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance plan for $228 monthly.
Obamacare, however, canceled it, with a “comparable” plan being priced at $1,208 a month with a $5,500 deductible.
“It’s unaffordable,” he said.
The problems all are following the rollout of Obamacare’s Healthcare.gov website, which immediately was hit with catastrophic breakdowns when it opened on Oct. 1. In the month since, there have been only occasional success stories.
Facing criticism for the website failures, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius promptly said she, as a federal public official, didn’t work for those in America who were critical of her.
Now, apparently, the paper application method is following the path of the online, “navigator” and telephone signup procedures into that no-man’s land of inoperability, according to a new report.
He cited access through the website, which has been plagued by massive technology failures, through government-paid “navigators,” who can’t work without the website either, and on the phone, which also requires the website.
Now he reports even the old-fashioned mail application process – doesn’t work.
“Even though you can begin the process now via mail, you won’t be able to actually sign up for a plan without a working website or 1-800 number.”
He explained, “After completing the sixth step on the application – and sending it in (and assuming it arrives), you will next be contacted with eligibility results. And assuming you are, in fact, eligible, you’ll still have to go to Healthcare.gov or call the 1-800 number to select that plan.
“What’s the point of the mail alternative as a website workaround if you still have to go online?”
The congressional investigations are in their formative stage now.
Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., told Face the Nation over the weekend he’ll subpoena records relating to the building of the Obamacare federal website.
“This president has to understand, this was his signature legislation,” he said. “They voted it on a purely partisan basis, but they had unlimited money, $600 million to do this part, and billions to do the other part. The president has been poorly served in the implementation of his own signature legislation. So if somebody doesn’t leave, and if there isn’t a real restructuring – not just a 60-day, somebody comes in and tries to fix it – then he’s missing the point of management 101, which is: these people are to serve him well and they haven’t.”
U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, the chairman of the subcommittee on national security, also is calling for an investigation into how voter registration information is being used by the federal government after it’s collected online through Obamacare.
In a letter to Sebelius, he said, “Given the well-documented flaws with the health care application process, the public lacks confidence that HHS has the ability to safeguard applicants’ voter information. Documents reviewed by the committee show that applicants may submit personal information over the internet during the application process without encryption, potentially exposing personally identifiable information to interception and abuse.”
He continued, “Further, it is unclear how HHS uses the voting information it collects once a user submits this data … applicants rightly expect that only state election officials will have access to their information.”
The letter requests “all documents, including e-mails, related to HHS’s decision to include voter registration on the Health Insurance Marketplace” as well as a long list of other details.
In Alaska, the “give-up” factor appeared.
The National Review reported Enroll Alaska, which was set up to help Alaskans enroll, had enrolled three people since Oct. 1, and has now given up.
The White House defense also appeared to start cracking. Vigorously opposing any sort of delay to any provisions during the fight with Republicans over the debt ceiling, Obama’s team Monday announced a six-week extension until March 31 for Americans to sign up for coverage and avoid the fines and penalties.