The Campaign Spot

An Administration Addicted to Lying

Another portion of today’s Morning Jolt deals with the administration’s insistence, in the face of quite a bit of evidence and analysis, that the Obamacare exchange website will be working by the end of the month. You may have noticed that the month ends in about two weeks. They already know whether they’ll be able to make that deadline, and the early word is “no.” But administration spokesperson Jennifer Palmieri is still insisting they’re on track to make the deadline.

The editorial board of USA Today lays out why that deadline is important:

When the White House isn’t cluelessly advising people whose health insurance policies are being canceled to go shop at its barely functional website, it’s acting as if there’s plenty of time for people to sign up because the open enrollment period doesn’t end until March 31. Tell that to millions of would-be enrollees who don’t have the luxury of waiting that long because their insurance expires at the end of this year.

Administration troubleshooter Jeffrey Zients promised the website would be working smoothly for most users by the end of this month. Even if the exchanges begin to work well by then — a big if — that will leave people whose insurance policies run out at the end of the year little time to sign up for insurance that kicks in on New Year’s Day. The deadline for signing up for insurance that begins Jan. 1 is Dec. 15.

If the administration said today, “Zients and his team are encountering new technical problems they didn’t expect, and they are unlikely to have the site working by the end of the month,” they would get a lot of criticism. But some portion of the public might feel glad that they were at least getting the hard truths, and that Obama and his team were finally quitting the happy talk and false assurances. Instead, we’re going to get the same “we couldn’t meet the deadline” admission, only much closer to the deadline.

This administration is truly addicted to lying, because they lie A) even when no one believes them, B) even when the only benefit of the lie is a very brief respite from criticism, C) even when the lie is certain to be exposed, and D) even when that certain exposure will result in disastrous consequences.

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