HHS: Hey, we got a million visitors yesterday!
posted at 10:41 am on December 3, 2013 by Ed Morrissey
Hey, so have we — on many occasions, and we didn’t get them because we passed a Blog-Reading Mandate and cancelled people’s existing favorite reads, either. (Hmmmmm.) But let’s not let than rain on the HHS bragging parade today, in which spokesperson Joanne Peters crows about the “stable” Healthcare.gov:
High demand for quality, affordable health care with 1m visitors to http://t.co/FuYxsxqEJS on Monday alone. Site is stable.
— Joanne Peters (@JoannePtrs) December 3, 2013
Well, “high demand” happens when the government passes a law that forces millions out of their existing insurance plan, as Phil Kerpen noted yesterday when HHS started bragging about traffic numbers, as Twitchy reported this morning
Most people trying to sign up on http://t.co/SHUhLTJc4W are not going because they want to, but because the plans they had were CANCELED.
— Phil Kerpen (@kerpen) December 2, 2013
Don’t forget, too, that “demand” is a private-sector function in a market situation. When government mandates purchases and then brags that it’s found a “demand” three weeks before the deadline to meet the mandate, that’s less than impressive for a sales pitch. It’s a bit like bragging about demand for Breathalyzer tests based on a surge in traffic stops for suspected DUIs.
By the way … how many of the one million visitors managed to actually buy health insurance? Peters doesn’t mention that figure, but even if she did, the real number is still likely to be zero — at least so far:
Bob Shlora of Alpharetta, Ga., was supposed to be a belated Obamacare success story. After weeks of trying, the 61-year-old told ABC News he fully enrolled in a new health insurance plan through the federal marketplace over the weekend, and received a Humana policy ID number to prove it.
But two days later, his insurer has no record of the transaction, Shlora said, even though his account on the government website indicates that he has a plan.
“I feel like this: My application was taken … by a bureaucrat, it was put on a conveyor belt and it’s still going around, and it’s never going to leave the building,” he said. “I’ve lost hope. If it happens, great.”
Obama administration officials acknowledged today that some of the roughly 126,000 Americans who completed the torturous online enrollment process in October and November might not be officially signed up with their selected issuer, even if the website has told them they are.
Until HHS and CMS build the back-end systems and they actually work, very few people who think they have insurance should be celebrating … even if HHS is having a party over its visitor statistics.