It’s one thing to have a red-state Democrat like Joe Manchin push for a delay in enforcing the ObamaCare mandates. Manchin has to eventually face an angry, conservative constituency that may be looking for less of a Democratic rubber stamp the next time he stands for election, even if that is five years from now. When Richard Blumenthal, a progressive favorite from deep-blue Connecticut, starts agitating for a delay even after the White House redefined the mandate deadline for a six-week bump, that’s another story. And when Blumenthal strongly implies that the Obama administration hasn’t yet been honest with the American people, you know that the train has truly wrecked (via The Weekly Standard):
“We have to consider delaying the mandate, that is the penalty,” said Blumenthal. “The administration made some –”
Said the MSNBC host, “For how long, do you think?”
“Well, that will depend on, again, the leveling with the American people as to how soon these glitches are going to be solved. If it’s a matter of days, then the delay would be different than if it’s a matter of months. But the the important point here is that we need more certainty,” said Blumenthal.
The chyron here is a little amusing, too. MSNBC’s panel had been discussing some of the red-state Democrats who had begun to call for a delay — the same delay that Republicans wanted before the shutdown, mind you — when they brought Blumenthal into the discussion. The conversation demonstrated clearly that this impulse to bail out of the mandate isn’t limited to red-state Democrats any longer, and even Democrats in deep blue states who don’t face re-election fights for another four years have begun to worry about it.
Blumenthal uses the term “glitches,” even though the ship sailed on that nomenclature at least two weeks ago, but also demands that the White House begin “leveling with the American people” about the nature and the causes of the debacle. Blumenthal isn’t buying the happy talk that Barack Obama offered on Monday about the Healthcare.gov system or the HHS effort as a whole. And if a deep-blue Connecticut progressive isn’t buying it, there aren’t many suckers left for the Obama administration for support.
Of course, with the House Energy and Commerce hearings now underway, there aren’t many fig leaves left for ObamaCare supporters. Daniel Halper clips this remarkable admission from today’s testimony, in which the prime contractor CGI tells the panel that there was no pilot program in the 42-month development cycle:
A member of Congress asked, “Did y’all do any kind of a pilot program on this before it was rolled out?”
“No,” said the contractor, “there was no pilot program.”
I’ve done my own investigation, and I’ve found the culprit for this decision (NSFW):
My apologies to Bill O’Reilly for digging up this chestnut, but … it just fits so well.