Obamacare Enrollment Numbers Will Be "Very Low," According to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius

Whitehouse.govWhitehouse.govWe’ll finally get a look at some official enrollment numbers for Obamacare’s federal exchanges next week. To the surprise of almost no one, Health and Human Services Secretary said today that the actual enrollment totals won’t be very high. Sebelius testified on the botched rollout of Obamacare’s online insurance portals today. A few details, via Politico:

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today acknowledged that long-awaited enrollment figures for the rocky first month of Obamacare will be “very low.”

“We intend to give you as much information as we can validate,” Sebelius told a Senate Finance Committee hearing where lawmakers from both parties harshly criticized the rollout and her agency’s lack of foresight about the massive problems. She said the initial batch of enrollment figures being released next week cover “the first month of enrollment” and will include both Medicaid and health plan numbers in the new insurance exchanges.

So far, the administration, which is directly running Obamacare's insurance exchanges in 36 states, has released some web traffic numbers, the number of applications submitted across all federal and state exchanges, and the number of subsidy calculations performed by the IRS. Federal officials have suggested that the numbers they have released prove there's strong interest in the law. But the administration declined to given any official enrollment totals. 

Both Sebelius and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney previously refused to discuss enrollment figures on the grounds that they didn’t have the numbers. Notes from daily meetings in the administration’s daily Obamacare “war room” meetings later revealed that senior administration officials had exact numbers for the first few days—with just six individuals successfully enrolling on day one, and a total of 248 enrollments on day two. 

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  • John Galt||

    I liked it a lot better when I was going to be given prison time for refusing to participate in the ACA. At least I would have been taking a serious stand against a serious attack on my rights.

  • CatoTheElder||

    You are, of course, subject to prison time for knowingly filing an incomplete Form 1040. I presume that the form will include ACA data.

  • Rasilio||

    And lets not forget, while the IRS is barred from using any force to compel you to pay your penaltax the law makes no statement on how monies paid by you to the IRS shall be applied to your tax bill. All they need to do is rule that funds will be applied to the penaltax before any other tax liability is settled and it instantly becomes impossible to avoid paying the penaltax without also leaving other tax liabilities unpaid which they can arrest and seize assets for (unless you are one of the few who has no tax liability whatsoever in which case you're eligible for Medicare so the penaltax is moot)

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    What about crashing your credit? I don't remember if that is addressed or not.

  • ||

    I wonder what would stop a person from submitting false health insurance information to the IRS. Like a "crack". Use someone else's group number and member ID, or whatever. Find an insurance company that doesn't have an automated database link to the IRS, and use that.

    How deeply are they actually going to check this stuff, really? How closely will they be ABLE to?

    For that matter what would stop someone from setting up a fake insurance company linked into the database that provides fake numbers and interfaces with the back end?

    It could be on Tor like Silk Road. You buy an ID for a few bucks and get to avoid the penalty. And they run a server that supplies the IRS with falsified insurance information.

  • ||

    You could call it 'HackObamaCare.com'

  • Scarecrow Repair||

    Not to mention it would have doubled the prison population and embarrassed the hell out of the politicians.

  • GILMORE||

    "Obamacare Enrollment Numbers Will Be "Very Low," According to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius"

    There is No Sugarcoating It = The Challenger Shuttle Mission is running behind schedule

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    By all means, let's continue focusing on the shoddy portal and not the calamitous law on the other side of it.

  • Sevo||

    I think there's sufficient focus to cover 'em both.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    So you're telling me that your interactions with the American voter leads you to believe they can digest a wide range of information on a topic or topics? NO I DIDN'T THINK SO.

  • Sevo||

    Now that you put it that way, I concede.

  • CE||

    What does the "Affordable" in the Affordable Care Act mean?

  • Aresen||

    The same thing that "to serve and protect" means.

  • AlmightyJB||

    HA

  • GILMORE||

    "What does the "Affordable" in the Affordable Care Act mean?"

    It means, "How much do you have in your wallet?"

  • ||

    This.

    Our enlightened better have decided that people at a certain income level can "afford" to pay for other people's health care.

    As long as they think that you can afford to give the government more of your money, they will take it.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    "The FYTWCA" does have a certain ring to it...

  • angus||

    It means America can afford to care for 248 people.

  • blcartwright||

    what's $600m for the website divided by 248 people?

  • Brutus||

    It's the same as the Ministry of Plenty's name.

  • Aresen||

    Notes from daily meetings in the administration’s daily Obamacare “war room” meetings later revealed that senior administration officials had exact numbers for the first few days—with just six individuals successfully enrolling on day one, and a total of 248 enrollments on day two.

    Obviously, geometric growth!

    That would have been nearly 10,000 by day three, 400,000 by day four, 16,000,000 by day five and 640,000,000 by day six, meaning everyone, including the populations of Canada, Mexico, France and Germany.

    On the seventh day, the Obama rested.

    /snark

  • CatoTheElder||

    Evidently Captain Obvious joined the Healthcare.gov surge team.

  • Jerry on the boat||

    with just six individuals successfully enrolling on day one, and a total of 248 enrollments on day two.

    So that's all them MSNBC viewers?

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Has to be more than that. Just look at the triple digit number.

  • R C Dean||

    I doubt all of those people are actually going to acquire insurance through the HIE.

    (1) The odds that they all got accurate quotes is low.

    (2) The odds that they will all pay the first premium is next to zero.

    Whatever the total number of people who actually buy insurance through the HIE is, it will be lower than the number who "enrolled" (even reading that to mean more than "set up an account" to cover "completed an application").

  • XM||

    Nothing like talking about Obamacare failures to make you feel better after TM and Christie victories.

    If only 6 individuals enrolled, we can literally find out who was the very first person to buy insurance on Obamacare.

  • The Other Kevin||

    We could, but that would take about 12 programmers and 4 weeks.

  • Adam330||

    Guess on what the number will be? I bet under 10,000.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    Any guess on whether it will even be accurate or one they pulled out of their ass?

  • Brett L||

    I think the press is going to make them show their work. Jay Carney has been such an asshole, I don't think anyone in the White House press pool wants to cut him a break anymore.

  • Hopfiend||

    rhetorical question.

  • ||

    Seconded.

  • Dave Krueger||

    “We intend to give you as much information as we can validate,...”

    Which won't be much because the worse the news is, the more we tend to think it's not valid.

  • The Last American Hero||

    Chocolate Nixon likes comparing his program to Apple. I've gotta believe if the CFO of Apple wanted to know how many iPhones they sold this month, there'd be pretty accurate data available within minutes, broken out by model/region/carrier and any other way you'd want to slice the data.

    Where's the daily numbers by State and broken out by - created account and enrolled?

  • Cyto||

    This site only cost a few hundred million. If you want reporting, that's extra!

  • JidaKida||

    Dude that make sno sense ta all man, none.

    www.PrivacyRoad.tk

  • ||

    I think we should assume they know what the numbers are, and they aren't talking because they are indeed, very low, embarassingly, painfully low. So low that they fear releasing them, for whatever reason.

  • Adam330||

    If she didn't know the numbers yesterday, then how could she have said that they will be very low? She basically admitted she knows them, and just isn't telling until next week after they send the spin doctors onto the weekend programs to prepare the way.

  • Tom Wolff||

    That's some good snark, people! :D
    On the serious side, this whole mess is now a well-publicized fraud, so don't expect to see anyone but the Free Shit Army signing up for it.
    Keep loading more ammo, things are going to get sporty ...

  • Mumu Bobby||

    Very Low. As in Joe Very from down the block and Jake Low that works at that garage.

    But shouldn't we simply be happy for Joe and Jake? For Joe and Jake they have gone from 0% ACA to 100% ACA, an increase of infinity percent. Infinity, man. Infinity.

  • Len Bias||

    "Obamacare Enrollment Numbers Will Be "Very Low," According to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius"

    I'm confused. That sounds true, but it came from Kathleen Sebellius, so it must be a lie. WHICH IS IT?

  • Joe Clave||

    "Federal officials have suggested that the numbers they have released prove there's strong interest in the law."

    So I guess it's proof that there is strong interest in paying income tax since so many people file every year.

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