Healthcare.Gov was trending off and on yesterday. This caused “glitches”. Naturally Republicans jumped on this as proof that ObamaCare was a total failure that fell “flat”.
GOP News echoed Republicans and the RNC, claiming that ObamaCare fell “flat” on launch day due to the glitches, “ObamaCare Exchanges Fall Flat On Launch Day. Users Are Experiencing Multiple Technical Glitches Trying To Enroll In The ObamaCare Exchanges.”
If you take a “Romney surge” narrative, you get an Obama landslide reality. Take an ObamaCare falling “flat” on its rollout and you get servers crashed by traffic.
While it’s not always apparent what caused the problems, millions rushed the exchanges yesterday, and based on the CBO’s estimate that 7 million people would sign up this year, I’d say they might not have been expecting the surge.
The CBO anticipated 7 million people signing up for exchanges this year, but on the first day, more than 2 million hits came in on just the federal site. New York and California brought in another 15 million alone on the first day. Another 9 million are expected to enroll in Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
This morning on MSNBC, White House Deputy Senior Advisor for Communications & Strategy David Simas reported 4.7 million unique visits. On Tuesday, USA Today reported that about 2.8 million people visited the federal website HealthCare.gov since midnight. The federal site is handling the exchanges for 34 states.
Think Progress broke down the numbers for some state-run exchanges:
New York saw 10 million attempts to reach the site, California reported 5 million visits, 65,000 people visited the Illinois exchange — and submitted 1,100 applications- 78,000 Kentuckians logged on and completed more than 2,900 applications, and 55,000 “went to Colorado’s exchange site.”
California had 16,000 hits a second at times, according to Bloomberg. The weight of heavy traffic forces weaknesses to the surface. Do all of these people flooding the servers for information on ObamaCare really make Republicans feel secure in shutting down the government to take that insurance away from those Americans who just signed up for it?
But the most obvious point is, if there were glitches (and there will continue to be glitches) and many people were upset by them, that means that a lot of people wanted their ObamaCare. Pundits likened the rollout to shopping online on Cyber Monday.
While the government isn’t releasing the numbers of people who signed up for exchanges, it’s clear that Americans were eager to get information on the exchanges — far more than anticipated.
The most ironic thing about Republicans complaining about government servers not working perfectly is the idea that the people who just shut down the government have the gall to whine that a government run system wasn’t perfect.
A remotely reasonable party might see this run on ObamaCare exchanges causing server “glitches” as an indication that maybe shutting down the government in order to take that insurance away from those millions of people might be bad optics. A reasonable party would not be shocked by the run on the exchanges, because they would be aware of the millions suffering without insurance. A reasonable party would at least investigate the polls that show that even people who disagree with the law don’t want the government shutdown over it.
But what should scare Republicans the most is the number of misinformed people who appear to be Fox watching Republicans who hate “ObamaCare”, but want that ACA or state run exchange. Yes, it’s true, people want to live more than they want to help Republicans destroy President Obama. Go figure.
Image: Getty Images/CNN
Ms. Jones is the editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.