Administration Calls in 'Presidential Innovation Fellows' to Fix Obamacare Website

October 31, 2013 - 3:49 PM

Do you want to know something interesting about the nerd herd Obama brought in to fix Healthcare.gov?  It's made up of White House fellows.

As Richard Pollack at the Washington Examiner wrote yesterday:

"[Jeff] Zients is a former acting director of the federal Office Management and Budget who rejoined the Obama administration to oversee the tech surge."

"Federal officials plucked participants in the Presidential Innovation Fellows program and assigned them to CGI Federal, the U.S. subsidiary of CGI Group, the Canadian firm that was awarded the $94 million main design contract for Healthcare.gov. Fellows typically spend six to 13 months working in a federal department or agency as "change agents" and to promote government-wide innovation, according to whitehouse.gov."

"Healthcare.gov is the Obamacare program's web portal and was launched Oct. 1. The site immediately suffered so many malfunctions that it became a massive embarrassment for the president."

Then again, the number of people working with on the tech surge remains unknown. Julie Bataille, CMS' spokeswoman declined to give a number, which she said would be "a distraction."

Pollack also noted that Bill Allison, editorial director of the Sunlight Foundation, a nonprofit aimed at increasing transparency and accountability in government, said, "It's unbelievable that they haven't announced who is behind this. You would think they would want to highlight the people to just reassure the country that we've got these experts."

So, who's the point person, or persons?  This inability to come clean about a simple question hearkens back to last June when FBI Director Robert Mueller didn't know who was leading the FBI investigation into the IRS scandal, which saw the revenue enforcement agency targeting conservative groups.  One month later, the FBI had still not contacted even a single group targeted by the IRS.