Here’s another example of the ineffectiveness of the Obama administration—of government generally—as a business manager. HHS’ Office of the Inspector General conducted a review of ObamaMart’s performance last fall and early winter—from October through the end of December—although it didn’t include four ObamaMart centers that chose not to comply with the IG’s request for information.
As of the first quarter of 2014, the Federal marketplace [ObamaMart] was unable to resolve about 2.6 million of 2.9 million inconsistencies because the CMS eligibility system was not fully operational. It was unable to resolve inconsistencies even if applicants submitted appropriate documentation.
These inconsistencies pertained to citizenship, national status, and lawful presence; income; and employer-sponsored minimum essential coverage.
These are things that determine whether a citizen must buy a government-approved health plan, and if so whether that citizen is eligible for taxpayer subsidy for the premiums.
And there’s this [emphasis added]:
[ObamaMart] was capable of resolving more than 330,000 inconsistencies with Social Security number, non-employer minimum essential coverage, incarceration status, and whether the applicant is an Indian. However, during the same reporting period, the Federal marketplace reported that it had actually resolved only about 10,000 such inconsistencies, or less than 1 percent of the total.
The thing isn’t even capable of collecting quality control data.
[ObamaMart] could not determine the number of applicants who had at least one inconsistency. Rather, the Federal marketplace reported unique inconsistencies, and it could not determine the corresponding number of applicants because one applicant could have more than one inconsistency. As a result, it was not possible at the time of our evaluation to determine the extent to which inconsistencies are distributed across applicants in the Federal marketplace.
Marketplaces also reported that data on inconsistencies may be overstated. Some marketplaces reported that failures with eligibility systems allowed applicants to submit multiple applications. In these instances, each application could be processed and cause the same inconsistencies to occur and be counted.
There were a number of examples; I only excerpted the one.
Just wait until tax time next April when these failures will come home to roost. Who’s got the government-approved plan? Who’s (still) eligible for taxpayer subsidy? Who owes the government a refund because he wasn’t eligible for that taxpayer subsidy, or wasn’t eligible for so much? Not even the Shadow knows.
But the ones who’ll be hurt the most will be the little guy, barely making ends meet and forced to buy a plan he neither needed nor wanted, and the little guy who must pay back the subsidy for which he wasn’t actually eligible.