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FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR

If you are an Oregonian who has lost your health insurance, make private arrangements NOW.

The (Democratic-controlled) Oregon state government will not have its website up and running in time. I repeat: the Oregon state government will not have its website up and running in time. Rely on the website, and you will have gaps in coverage.

People who want health coverage beginning in January through Oregon’s troubled insurance exchange need to act fast.

State officials said Wednesday they don’t expect to have the online enrollment system working in time for people to enroll in plans that begin on the first of the year. They also announced that paper applications, their backup system, must be mailed within just two weeks, by Dec. 4.

[snip]

[Exchange Director Rocky] King said the latest projections show the system should be ready for individuals to enroll online beginning Dec. 16, which would mean people who enroll on the first day would get coverage beginning in February.

King then had the audacity to say this: “We’re not broken,” King told lawmakers. “It’s just not done.” …No. No, this is pretty much the definition of ‘broken.’ As is ‘you have to mail in your applications and hope that we don’t lose the paperwork the way that bureaucracies have been doing since the time of the Babylonians.’ And I’m not even bringing up the tax situation that might arise from picking a non-approved plan. EAT the tax, if you have to*.

I’ll finish this up with a comment from the above article that sums up the situation pretty much perfectly.

“This would just be kind of a bad joke about the state’s ability to build and deploy large IT projects, except for the impact on people’s lives,” said Rep. Jason Conger, a Bend Republican who is running for U.S. Senate.

I have no idea whether Rep. Conger is the best Republican choice for this race, but he’s got the right idea there. This is funny, until you start thinking about all the people that Senator Jeff Merkley and Governor John Kitzhaber are hurting through their support of Obamacare. And I do not use the term ‘hurting’ loosely: I am speaking of actual physical pain. People can DIE when the government screws up their health care options.

Moe Lane

*Note that I’m assuming that this would be an option: Oregon is one of the states going along with Obama’s rather desperate Hail Mary play, which should tell you how badly their state exchange is screwed up.

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