ATR President Grover Norquist, together with five other conservative leaders today applauded the work of House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) for his work investigating the $305 million failed Cover Oregon Obamacare Exchange.
The letter can be found here and is pasted below.
June 13, 2016
The Honorable Jason Chaffetz
Chairman, Committee on Oversight and Government Reform
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20510
Dear Chairman Chaffetz:
We thank you and your staff at the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform for your latest report, “How Mismanagement and Political Interference Squandered $305 Million Taxpayer Dollars.” You are to be commended for shining a bright light on the debacle that was Oregon’s Obamacare state exchange, and we thank you on behalf of taxpayers, grassroots activists fighting for limited government, and steadfast opponents of Obamacare’s waste and intrusiveness.
As you are aware, our organizations and others from around the country have spent the past eighteen months working with you, your staff, and members of the committee to hold Oregon’s current and past politicians accountable for the massive waste of taxpayer money that you expose in your report. Our watchdog activities on behalf of good government and sunlight transparency can only go so far on our own, however. Real leadership on the part of the Congress is needed to bring action and accountability. You and the committee have provided that leadership.
Thanks to the irrefutable evidence in your report, the world now knows that Oregon’s Obamacare exchange was intentionally sabotaged by former Governor John Kitzhaber (D-Ore.) and his allies through a politicized effort aimed at first undermining the launch of the site and then migrating to the national Obamacare exchange—www.healthcare.gov. The agency responsible for overseeing state exchange development, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), devoted precious little in the way of oversight to uncover the state’s mismanagement and political interference and to assure taxpayers that the $305 million given to Oregon to develop its exchange was being spent properly.
The minority’s report, in contrast to the committee’s official report on this matter, does not properly assign blame where it belongs—to the political cronies in and around the Kitzhaber administration.
We believe it is entirely appropriate that you have referred this matter to the office of both the U.S. Attorney General and the Oregon State Attorney for further investigation, not to exclude criminal investigation.
Oregon’s reckless case of politics, money, and power is one of the worst chapters in Obamacare’s troubled implementation, but it is not likely to be the last. Your committee has laid the groundwork for further probes to protect taxpayers against wasteful spending, mismanagement, and political power plays, and we stand ready to aid and assist you in your efforts.
Americans for Tax Reform
Council for Citizens Against Government Waste
National Taxpayers Union
Independent Women’s Voice