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Bitter Medicine: Political Fallout from the Obamacare Website Fiasco

Bitter Medicine: Political Fallout from the Obamacare Website Fiasco

As just about every news site in the world is reporting, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius took a hard fall today in a House committee hearing in the rancorous wake of the Obamacare website debacle.

The Oct. 1 "unveiling" of the Healthcare.gov website was a botching of a very high magnitude, even by federal government standards.

This horror show started to take shape the moment the Healthcare.gov site crashed on its first day of "operation" 29 days ago. It was a botching of a very high magnitude, even by federal government standards. Also a very conspicuous one. And the GOP is making hay with it, as any self-(dis)respecting political party would do given such a delicious opening.

Or, for that matter, any self-(dis)respecting comedian: See Sebelius's recent ill-advised interview with Jon Stewart on The Daily Show.

The odds that Sebelius will survive this—what shall we call it? this process?—seem slim. And if the Obama administration—and, specificially, Sebelius's department—fail to meet their pledge of having Healthcare.gov's myriad glitches un-glitched by Nov. 30, we may see a new definition for the term "nuclear option."

Meanwhile, speaking of momentous squares on the calendar, the clock keeps ticking louder as we approach Jan. 1, 2015, the date by which all U.S. employers with 50 or more full-time workers—a category that obviously includes many manufacturers—must offer employees comprehensive health insurance or face penalties of up to $2,000 per employee.

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