CBS: White House warned three years ago that ObamaCare was running off the rails
posted at 8:41 am on November 4, 2013 by Ed Morrissey
Remember when you’re watching this that it pertains to the same people who now argue that they know better than you about what kind of insurance coverage you need. CBS News reports that an internal memo warned the White House three years ago that the Healthcare.gov project was turning into a disaster, and that no one with any expertise had control of the project:
CBS News is learning the Obama administration knew of the risks associated with the Obamacare rollout well before last month.
Three years ago, a trusted Obama health care adviser warned the White House it was losing control of Obamacare. A memo obtained by CBS News said strong leadership was missing and the law’s successful implementation was in jeopardy. The warnings were specific and dire — and ignored.
David Cutler, who worked on the Obama 2008 campaign and was a valued outside health care consultant wrote this blunt memo to top White House economic adviser Larry Summers in May 2010: “I do not believe the relevant members of the administration understand the president’s vision or have the capability to carry it out.”
Cutler wrote no one was in charge who had any experience in complex business start-ups. He also worried basic regulations, technology and policy coordination would fail.
“You need to have people who have understanding of the political process, people who understand how to work within an administration and people who understand how to start and build a business, and unfortunately, they just didn’t get all of those people together,” Cutler said.
The White House dismissed these and other warnings. It relied on appointed bureaucrats and senior White House health care advisers. Fearful of constant attacks from congressional Republicans, the White House became secretive about the law’s complexity and regulatory reach.
The White House didn’t heed this warning for the same reason they embarked on this project in the first place. The bureaucrats and the activists thought they were smarter than the markets, and smarter than the people who have actual experience in the private sector. It’s the same infection that creates the monumentally tone-deaf argument that people should be happy that the government forced them out of existing plans they chose for themselves in order to pay more for coverage that the consumers know they don’t need. It’s unbridled hubris, and it produced this inevitable Greek tragedy that also doubles as farce.
Now, keep this in mind, too. Did the White House bring in ground-up business people and web-savvy firms to take over from the bureaucrats and the contractors who wasted $400 million on a web portal that doesn’t portal anything? No — they brought in Jeffrey Zients, one of Obama’s economic advisers, and kept everyone else in place. With this background in mind, just how likely will it be that the November 30th deadline for full functionality will be met?