The Latest: Democrats blame contractor for Cover Oregon woes

AP News
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Posted: May 25, 2016 11:38 AM

SALEM, Oregon (AP) — The Latest on congressional reports about the problems surrounding Oregon's health insurance website (all times local):

7:55 a.m.

Democrats on a congressional committee blame a contractor for the mishaps surrounding Oregon's health insurance enrollment website.

Minority members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee in a staff report released Wednesday say the Oracle Corporation "was primarily and directly responsible" for problems with the website.

Oregon produced the country's worst rollout of the new national health insurance program. While the crippled federal website eventually worked, Oregon's failed to enroll a single person online. The state had to hire 400 people to process paper applications.

A representative for Oracle didn't immediately return a phone call and email seeking comment.

In a separate report Republicans on the House panel blamed Gov. John Kitzhaber and a federal agency for failed oversight of the health insurance website. However Democrats say the California-based Oracle failed to deliver a functioning website and misled state officials.

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6:10 a.m.

A congressional committee has found former Gov. John Kitzhaber, his advisers and a federal agency mishandled the creation of Oregon's health insurance enrollment website.

The committee is asking the Justice Department and state attorney general to conduct criminal investigations. It says in a report the Democratic governor's political advisers made decisions regarding Cover Oregon with his re-election campaign in mind.

Oregon produced the country's worst rollout of the new national health insurance program. While the crippled federal website eventually worked, Oregon's failed to enroll a single person online. The state had to hire 400 people to process paper applications.

The Republican-controlled House committee says the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' failed oversight of Cover Oregon resulted in millions of wasted taxpayer dollars.

An email seeking comment from Kitzhaber early Wednesday morning through his fiancée, Cylvia Hayes, wasn't immediately returned. Representatives from CMS also didn't immediately return a request for comment.