“What We Have Here Is a Failure to Communicate”

How did Kathleen Sebelius make so many visits to the White House, and at the same time, supposedly leave Barack Obama and the rest of the White House completely and totally in the dark about the implementation problems related to Obamacare?

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was in frequent contact with President Obama and senior White House aides before the disastrous launch of the federal ObamaCare exchange last year.

While Sebelius has said the president was not aware of HealthCare.gov’s problems, more than 750 pages of documents obtained by The Hill through a Freedom of Information Act request show she made scores of visits to the White House.

The documents reveal that Sebelius met with or attended calls and events with Obama at least 18 times between Oct. 27, 2012, and Oct. 6, 2013, including at least seven instances in which the two were scheduled to discuss the new healthcare law, according to the secretary’s draft schedules.

She had breakfast or lunch with Pete Rouse, considered one of Obama’s closest advisers, at least three times. Moreover, Sebelius had scheduled calls or meetings with Valerie Jarrett, an Obama confidante, and White House chief of staff Denis McDonough.

Sebelius also met with or had calls with Chris Jennings, then a White House senior healthcare adviser, at least seven times in the roughly yearlong period.

The schedules suggest Sebelius was an active White House presence in the months leading up to the botched rollout, and raise new questions about why Obama wouldn’t have known about the problems that were exposed on Oct. 1.

Either someone is not telling the truth here about what the president and his staff knew and when they knew it, or all of the people who liked making jokes about how Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush were out of touch with what was going on in their own administrations, have some new material for their comedy acts. In any event, while I understand that the port side doesn’t like investigating inconvenient stories like this one, Congress ought to ask some questions about this matter. And yes, that means both chambers of Congress; just because the Senate is run by Democrats does not mean that it is supposed to ignore its oversight responsibilities when it comes to examining how a Democratic administration allowed the Obamacare clusterscrewup (we try to keep it clean on this blog) to take place.