$474M of Your Taxpayer Dollars Wasted on Failed ObamaCare Exchanges
Your taxpayer dollars went to four failed state ObamaCare exchanges costing $474 million dollars. Now, those states are figuring out how to dig themselves out of the financial hole. Should they ask Washington for more money?
Oregon spent $248 million and was the first to drop its state exchange.
Each of the states — Massachusetts, Oregon, Nevada and Maryland — embraced Obamacare, and each underperformed. All have come under scathing criticism and now face months of uncertainty as they rush to rebuild their systems or transition to the federal exchange.
The federal government is caught between writing still more exorbitant checks to give them a second chance at creating viable exchanges of their own or, for a lesser although not inexpensive sum, adding still more states to HealthCare.gov. The federal system is already serving 36 states, far more than originally anticipated.
As for the contractors involved, which have borne most of the blame for the exchange debacles, a few continue to insist that fixes are possible. Others are braced for possible legal action or waiting to hear if now-tainted contracts will be terminated.
The $474 million spent by these four states includes the cost that officials have publicly detailed to date. It climbs further if states like Minnesota and Hawaii, which have suffered similarly dysfunctional exchanges, are added.
Their totals are just a fraction of the $4.698 billion that the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation calculates the federal government has approved for states since 2011 to help them determine whether to create their own exchanges and to assist in doing so. Still, the amount of money that now appears wasted is prompting calls for far greater accountability.
Gerri Willis, host of The Willis Report on Fox Business Network, weighed in on America’s Newsroom. She said the problem is that states are hiring companies that are government computer experts, not Silicon Valley-type professionals.
Willis said states should stop pouring money down the drain and move over to the federal exchange.
Melissa Francis, host of FBN’s Money, agreed with that point. “If you want this to work right, you need somebody like Oracle. Somebody who does this for a living, for a profit and has to survive.”
She said that contractors need to have the flexibility to build sites their way, without the government signing off on every decision.
“It’s crony politics as usual,” Francis said.