Between this and the devastating USA Today piece calling for “total overhaul,” the official Hot Air pool on when O will announce he’s delaying ObamaCare is open for business. Having hundreds of thousands of people tearing their hair out in frustration at using his crappy site won’t shame him into pulling the plug, but the political embarrassment of his allies starting to back away from his big “achievement” might.
Visit the website of Michigan-based design firm Teal Media today and you’d never know designers there helped create HealthCare.gov, the troubled online portal for Obamacare.
Just a few days ago, the site looked very different. Teal Media’s homepage featured its work on Obamacare prominently, placing a link to the firm’s work on one of the most well-known websites in America front and center. Now that link, as well as the page devoted to Teal’s work on HealthCare.gov, have been removed…
Teal Media doesn’t seem interested in talking about its work on HealthCare.gov. A woman who answered the phone at the company’s headquarters immediately referred BuzzFeed to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) at the Department of Health And Human Services (HHS) before a single question was asked.
Per BuzzFeed, Teal Media was founded by a former Obama campaign staffer and serves lots of Democratic clients. This isn’t just a random business walking away from a car crash, in other words. This is his own team.
Meanwhile, back at HHS:
The Obamacare website, which launched October 1, deleted some users’ passwords, according to multiple call center representatives for the site.
Five call center agents told CNN on Wednesday that because of an upgrade to the beleaguered website, many passwords were deleted if they were created in the first week or so after the launch. More recently created user names and passwords don’t seem to have the same problems.
If the representatives have it right, some users will continue having trouble logging in, no matter how many times they try.
A few hours ago I tweeted out the question of when Obama will, now seemingly inevitably, announce that O-Care needs to be delayed for awhile as they work out the bugs. Lots of people replied “the evening before Veterans Day” or “the Wednesday before Thanksgiving,” but I think even that’s optimistic in terms of how much time he has left here to make a decision. If USA Today is right that the site’s facing at least six months of work, there’s no sense waiting until November to pull the plug. All that’ll achieve is another month of aggravation for his partners in the insurance industry as they try to sift through a pile of glitchy enrollments and lots of confusion and disappointment among the uninsured as they continue to try to enroll and wonder if they’ll have coverage next year. Any responsible administrator would look at this pile of flaming rubble and act soon to put out the fire. But then, a responsible administrator would never have built a site this mind-bogglingly bad and then rolled it out anyway on schedule despite its countless problems because he couldn’t bear to be politically embarrassed. So, yeah, “sometime around Thanksgiving” sounds about right. In the meantime, if you have any friends who are uninsured, you might want to give them a heads up that O’s preparing to pull the rug out from under them soon but hasn’t worked up the nerve to tell them yet.
Exit question: Who in the White House is going to play Sean Connery to Obama’s Harrison Ford?