Oh Boy: During Special Obamacare Enrollment Period, Zero People Enrolled in Expensive Hawaii Exchange

Katie Pavlich
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Posted: May 21, 2015 9:00 AM
Oh Boy: During Special Obamacare Enrollment Period, Zero People Enrolled in Expensive Hawaii Exchange

Earlier this year, Americans across the country were given an extended period of time to sign up for Obamacare in order to avoid being fined by the IRS for failing to obtain health insurance. Under the new law, those who don't have health insurance are penalized. In other words, the government is forcing people to get insurance or be punished.

Like many other aspects of Obamacare, the special enrollment period was an abysmal failure. 

According to Americans For Tax Reform, not a single person enrolled in Hawaii's Obamacare exchange during the extended special session. 

While Hawaii enrolled zero individuals and is the worst performing state, it is not alone. Vermont signed up only 97 households, while Rhode Island enrolled just 25 households.

Hawaii’s dismal performance should not be surprising. The website cost taxpayers $205 million but could only enroll 8,592 individuals in year one. Cost to taxpayers per enroll: $23,899.

The state legislature recently rejected a $28 million bailout for the website meaning that a contingency plan to dismantle the exchange and migrate to the federal exchange will be implemented immediately. Unfortunately, taxpayers are not off the hook yet as it is expected that moving to the federally run healthcare.gov will cost $30 million.

Unfortunately, the ongoing failures aren't isolated to the island state.

Hawaii is not the first website to implode. Oregon’s $305 million exchange was officially abolished earlier this year at an additional cost and of $41 million. The exchange is currently under investigation by numerous federal organizations for how it wasted so much money.

In all, states received $5.4 billion from the federal government for state-based Obamacare exchanges with no strings attached and zero oversight over spending decisions.

But remember everyone, Obamacare is a success...or something

Keep working America!