“President Barack Obama, who has portrayed himself as surprised by technical problems with the government's new healthcare website, was briefed earlier this year on a consultant's report that warned of possible widespread site failures, the White House said on Tuesday.
There have been weeks of questions about whether Obama understood the depth of the site's problems and let it open anyway, or simply "did not have enough awareness" of them, as the president stated at a Nov. 14 news conference.
While the government says it is improving the portal's performance every day, security experts told a Republican sponsored congressional hearing Tuesday that in their opinions, it is still not sufficiently secure to be used confidently by consumers.”
“Bits and pieces have leaked out over the past few weeks about flaws in the site's development process. Monday night, however, Republican lawmakers who oppose Obamacare released a report and recommendations prepared by McKinsey & Co. at the government's request in March 2013.
It cited, among other things, a rushed process that left insufficient time for testing and a focus by officials on getting people enrolled versus making the system work right.
The consequence, it said, could be system failures that could make enrollment slow or at times impossible for consumers, which is exactly what happened.
Questioned about the McKinsey study, White House spokesman Jay Carney said the president had been briefed on it in the spring.
But he said the president's familiarity with the report and recommendations did not contradict previous statements from the White House that described Obama as surprised by the scope of flaws in HealthCare.gov.
Obama was told that the problems identified by McKinsey were being addressed, Carney said. And Obama had never claimed to be unaware of "red flags" about the site, only of their seriousness.”
- Obama Was Briefed Last Spring on Obamacare Problems, Thomson/Reuters via newsmax.com, 11/20/2013
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