Right-wing media responded to news that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is resigning by lobbing personal attacks against the secretary and demonizing health care reform.
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Kathleen Sebelius To Resign As Health & Human Services Secretary
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius To Resign. News broke on April 10 that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius plans to resign from the Obama administration, as PBS reported:
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is resigning from the Obama administration after the rocky rollout of President Barack Obama's signature health care law, a White House official said Thursday.
Her resignation comes just one week after the end of the first enrollment period for the Obamacare law. While the opening weeks of the rollout were marred by website woes, the administration rebounded strongly by enrolling more than 7 million people in the new insurance marketplaces. [PBS, NewsHour, The Rundown, 4/10/14]
Conservative Media Respond With Scorn And Conspiracy Theories
Fox's Napolitano: Resignation Is Opportunity To "Relitigate All Of The Evils Of Obamacare." Discussing news that Sebelius would resign, Fox's senior judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano argued that the secretary's resignation is "an opportunity for the Republicans to relitigate all of the evils of Obamacare." [Fox News, Special Report with Bret Baier, 4/10/14]
Fox's Katie Pavlich: "This Is Not Accountability. This Is Her Taking The Easy Road Out." Townhall editor and Fox contributor Katie Pavlich said on Fox Business' Lou Dobbs Tonight that Sebelius' resignation was "not accountability. This is her taking the easy road out." [Fox Business, Lou Dobbs Tonight, 4/10/14]
Fox's Todd Starnes: After Sebelius Resignation, "Americans Should Fear What's Coming Next." Fox News' Todd Starnes tweeted that Sebelius resigned "after overseeing the destruction of the nation's healthcare system," and that "Americans should fear what's coming next":
Michelle Malkin: "Kathleen Sebelius Will Land On Her Corruptocrat Feet." Upon news that Sebelius would step down from HHS, conservative author and columnist Michelle Malkin tweeted:
Erick Erickson: We Can "Find Out The Real Obamacare Numbers" At Confirmation Hearing For Sebelius' Replacement. Fox contributor Erick Erickson engaged in Obamacare enrollment trutherism upon news of Sebelius' resignation:
Sebelius Oversaw Largest Expansion Of Health Insurance Coverage In 50 Years
At Least 9.5 Million Previously Uninsured Have Gained Coverage Under Obamacare. The LA Times reported on March 30 that based on "enrollment reports, surveys, and interviews," the ACA had already provided health care coverage to at least 9.5 million previously uninsured individuals as the initial enrollment deadline drew to a close. The report accounted for individuals who had signed up through the exchanges, people who will now receive insurance through the Medicaid expansion, people who bought plans directly through insurers, as well as young adults who choose to remain on their parent's health plans:
As the law's initial enrollment period closes, at least 9.5 million previously uninsured people have gained coverage. Some have done so through marketplaces created by the law, some through other private insurance and others through Medicaid, which has expanded under the law in about half the states.
The tally draws from a review of state and federal enrollment reports, surveys and interviews with insurance executives and government officials nationwide. [Los Angeles Times, 3/30/14]
Up To 7.5 Million Have Signed Up For Private Health Insurance Through ACA Marketplaces. As The Washington Post reported on April 10, about 7.5 million people have signed up for private health insurance on state and federal marketplaces set up by Obamacare:
About 7.5 million people have signed up for health insurance through the new state and federal marketplaces, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Thursday morning.
The number represents a significant jump from the 7.1 million Americans who signed up by March 31, the deadline to get coverage this year.
"As of this week, 400,000 additional Americans have signed up, and we expect that number to continue to grow," Sebelius said during a Senate Finance Committee hearing on Obama's proposed budget.
The number does not reflect the number of people who have paid their first month's premium, which guarantees that they have coverage. Sebelius has previously cited insurance company estimates that between 80 percent and 90 percent of enrollees are paying their premiums. [The Washington Post, 4/10/14]
Studies Show Health Reform Spurred Largest Expansion Of Health Insurance Coverage In 50 Years. As the Los Angeles Times reported:
President Obama's healthcare law, despite a rocky rollout and determined opposition from critics, already has spurred the largest expansion in health coverage in America in half a century, national surveys and enrollment data show.
The Affordable Care Act still faces major challenges, particularly the risk of premium hikes next year that could drive away newly insured customers. But the increased coverage so far amounts to substantial progress toward one of the law's principal goals and is the most significant expansion since the creation of Medicare and Medicaid in 1965. [Los Angeles Times, 3/30/14]