Now that the noise of the government shutdown has subsided, the nation is now more attuned to the deep flaws in the POTUS's Obamacare web portal Healthcare.gov. In fact, had Sen. Ted Cruz and his fellow enemies of Obamacare gone radio silent during the time since Obamacare's online rollout, they may have seen more of the damage to the Affordable Health Care act's public buy-in that they hoped for given all of the glitches in accessing the website.
At first, President Obama chalked those glitches up to a flood of web traffic, saying it was evidence that there was massive demand for the healthcare products. Three weeks later, though, millions still have not been able to work Healthcare.gov and its affiliate state sites. While the White House's goal is to sign up 500,000 people for healthcare by October 31, only about a quarter-million of people have done that, according to CNN's analysis (of 14 states).
Which is why Obama addressed the nation today, to acknowledge that there have been problems, but also telling them to Keep calm and continue to buy Obamacare.
"There's no sugarcoating it," said Obama from the Rose Garden today. "The website has been too slow, and people have been getting stuck during the application process."
Obama said that he recruited the "best and brightest" information technicians from across the nation to come work on improving the website, but he also encouraged people to sign up for Obamacare over the phone or in person. The Healthcare.gov website has been updated with information on how to access Obamacare through those offline avenues, which of course is still a problem if you don't have a computer or wi-fi.
As for the frustrations with the website, Obama said, "Nobody is madder than me that the website is not working as well as it should, which means it is going to get fixed."
About halfway through his speech, one of the women standing behind him at the Rose Garden almost fainted. The president helped catch her and responded, "This is what happens when I talk too long."