By Congressman Pete Gallego —
By now, everyone knows that the website healthcare.gov isn't working like it's supposed to. Last week, I asked Attorney General Eric Holder to review all government contracts associated with the website and to explore potential legal relief, including a possible refund of money already paid to the companies involved.
Whenever a consumer buys a defective product, that consumer usually has the chance to get his or her money back. Because the website is not performing as expected or promised; it was clearly not ready for the traffic it's receiving.
Thus, common sense would dictate that the website is defective. It is unfortunate for all of us that the companies involved in designing the website seem to have provided a non-functioning, or a minimally functioning product.
There are countless reports of people waiting hours to get through the site only to have the website crash when they finally log in. This is completely unacceptable. The website should work and Americans should be able to use it and navigate it; or we should get our money back.
Americans want affordable health insurance. A malfunctioning website makes it harder to get health insurance instead of easier.
The website situation is especially critical because it involves the health care of millions of Americans and their families, many of whom either worked at jobs where no insurance was offered or were denied health insurance due to pre-existing medical conditions.
The Affordable Care Act was meant to give more people access to health insurance – and at a reasonable price and with reasonable coverage. It was not supposed to make health insurance harder to get or more confusing than it already is.
The problems with healthcare.gov must be solved, and soon. Americans cannot and should not tolerate shoddy work, especially when both their taxpayer dollars and their health is at stake. I will continue to insist that Americans' get their money's worth – or that they get their money back.