American Elephants

“Comedy of Errors” is Way Too Tame a Phrase for This Mess. by The Elephant's Child

Oregon is standing out in a field of ObamaCare failure. So far, they have spent $160 million on an ObamaCare website and signed up exactly zero people. None, zero, zilch. The head of Oregon’s ObamaCare Exchange has resigned for, um, personal reasons. Carolyn Lawson, chief information officer at the Oregon Health Authority, decided that the state could manage the complex exchange itself, rather than hire a private-sector systems integrator, a decision since criticized by her superiors.

She was apparently close to Oracle Corp, the California technology giant that has been blamed for shoddy work and missing deadlines. Now, nearly three months after the federal deadline, Oregon’s exchange has emerged as a technological train wreck and a public relations nightmare. A fully functional website remains many weeks or months away.

State officials have been forced to spend even more money gearing up a system of temporary employees and contractors to manually process paper applications for health insurance.

Lawson began her job with the State of Oregon on July 1, 2011. The stat paid her $178,992 a year. Unfortunately Oregon’s leaders bragged for two years that it would have one of the most advanced insurance marketplaces. Then were embarrassed when the online system wasn’t ready to launch on schedule in October. As Ben at Ace of Spades said: “Everyone should work for the government, they over pay and don’t expect results.”


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