The Oregon health insurance exchange signed up only 44 people through the end of November, according to a report by the Department of Health and Human Services. Oregon was unable to reach triple figures despite receiving nine figures in federal money to build and promote its exchange. The amount of federal aid exceeded $300 million.
As Philip Klein notes, Obamacare fans can’t blame Republican resistance for the program’s failure in Oregon. The state is run by Democrats and it embraced Obamacare from the start. Indeed, its outreach program has been praised by Obamacare supporters, according to Klein.
Unfortunately, the enthusiasm of Oregon’s liberal politicians did not translate into a properly functioning website. In fact, the website was so dysfunctional that the exchange ended up relying on paper applications.
Even so, 44 enrollees is a shockingly low number. The frustration and bad publicity resulting from Oregon’s joke website must have driven potential applicants away.
Not an encouraging sign for the federal exchange, I should think.