Remember the disastrous rollout of the Obamacare website in October 2013? It turns out that even some people in Hillary Clinton’s inner circle thought someone should have been fired over that mess.
Neera Tanden, president of the Clinton-aligned Center for American Progress, sent an email to John Podesta on March 16, 2014 in which she offered her opinion that it was a mistake for the Obama administration not to fire someone. “I think it was a strategic error not to fire anyone in health care,” Tanden wrote. “carol Shea porter yelled at me about this for 10 min the other day,” she added, referring to the New Hampshire congresswoman.
“I’m trying to be artful here bc of the WH Conference but I do think in real life people would have gotten fired a long time ago,” Tanden wrote, adding, “And not just people in the agency no one cares about.”
You have to appreciate the implied distinction between how things work in government (under the Obama administration in this case) and how things work in “real life” by which I think Tanden means the private sector. In real life, you lose your job if you mess up as badly as HHS messed up on the Obamacare website. In the Obama administration though…not so much. Politico points out that two low-level employees did leave HHS in 2013:
Tony Trenkle, the chief information officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, announced his retirement during the HealthCare.gov rollout. But administration officials said he was not forced out.
Michelle Snyder, who was the chief operating officer and No. 2 official at CMS, retired in late 2013.
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius finally resigned in April 2014.