President Obama, on Sunday, defended Obamacare and claimed that he has held “everybody up and down the line” accountable for the botched rollout.
Obama was interviewed by Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly prior to the Super Bowl.
When initially asked by O’Reilly why he didn’t fire HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius for botching the rollout, Obama cited the enrollment figures of six million on Medicaid and three million of the “young invincibles” as examples of how Obamacare is now working. What he didn’t say, while avoiding directly answering O’Reilly’s question, was how many of those nine million are newly insured, and how many are just moving to the exchange from a previous insurance plan.
OReilly didn’t give up, and asked Obama a second time about why Sebelius still has a job:
O’REILLY: I’m sure — I’m sure that the intent is noble, but I’m a taxpayer.
O’REILLY: And I’m paying Kathleen Sebelius’ salary and she screwed up.
O’REILLY: And you’re not holding her accountable.
OBAMA: Yes, well, I — I promise you that we hold everybody up and down the line accountable. But when we’re…
O’REILLY: But she’s still there.
OBAMA: — when we’re in midstream, Bill, we want to make sure that our main focus is how do we make this thing work so that people are able to sign up?
And that’s what we’ve done.
Except that after four months, the website still has problems—The Washington Post reported today that 22,000 people who had tried to sign up for Obamacare discovered that the website made mistakes in their applications, and that their appeals to fix the errors have gone unanswered.
Yet despite these problems, no one has been fired. And based on Obama’s statement to the contrary that he has held “everybody” accountable, it is highly unlikely that anyone will be—especially Sebelius—to whom he has been oddly loyal.
O”Reilly isn’t the only one wondering why there has been a strange lack of accountability over the botched rollout. Obama’s former press secretary Robert Gibbs has also wondered why no one has been fired, saying that if this had been the private sector someone would have lost their job by now.
If he won’t fire Sebelius, perhaps he should move up the ladder and fire himself for foisting this disaster on the American public. But we know that won’t happen either.