Federal Exchange Website Crashes During Sebelius Photo Op


Well, this is unfortunate:

The plagued federal health exchange website HealthCare.gov greeted President Barack Obama’s top health official with an embarrassing error message while on a trip promoting the Affordable Care Act in Miami on Tuesday.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius met with local Obamacare “navigators,” people tasked with helping consumers learn about their health care options, as they counseled South Florida residents who were attempting to enroll in the health marketplace at North Shore Medical Center, according to the Miami Herald.

When Sebelius approached one table, she found an uncooperative website.

“The screen says ‘I’m sorry, the system is temporarily down,” a reporter chimed in over Sebelius’ shoulder.

“Well that’s ok, it’ll come back,” said a navigator. “You know, that happens every day.”

Here’s the video:


FILED UNDER: Healthcare Policy, US Politics, , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. john personna says:

    Finagle’s corollary to Murphy’s Law:

    Anything that can go wrong, will—at the worst possible moment

  2. al-Ameda says:

    About all that’s left for Kathleen to do is, tie that Website (for symbolic purposes a server will do) to the top of her station wagon (a Range Rover will do) and drive to Canada for a vacation.

  3. grumpy realist says:


    I know–I know. I should be sobbing in my beer for this unfortunate fiasco all over again. But honestly–is this The Gang Who Couldn’t Shoot Straight or what?

    Moral of the story: after you’ve blown up N rockets on the launch pad, you might want to be really, really sure that the next one will go up properly.

  4. C. Clavin says:

    Revit…a CAD program…crashed on me twice today.
    I guess that means Doug thinks we would be better off drafting by pencil and paper.

  5. edmondo says:

    “Crashing” is a pretty apt analogy for the Obama Administration.

  6. David M says:

    If this is a load related problem, not much Sebelius could do about it other than meet with the navigators at 4 AM.

  7. JKB says:

    @C. Clavin: a CAD program…crashed on me twice today.

    And what tax will be exacted from you for not being able to get your CAD work done?

    Do you continue to use the CAD program even though to get the drawing you’ll have to pay a lot of money and you didn’t want the drawing in the first place?

    Does your CAD program ask for all your private details then crash and otherwise give you a feeling that your information isn’t secure?

  8. JKB says:

    Next year, you’ll see this:

    Health Insurance Marketplace: Please wait

    We have lot of patients on our program right now and we’re working to make your experience here better. Please wait here until we send you to a doctor’s office. Thanks for your patients!

  9. David M says:


    We get it. You don’t understand what insurance is or how health insurance markets work.

  10. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    @David M: . You don’t understand what insurance is or how health insurance markets work.

    He apparently does better than the Obama administration does…

  11. C. Clavin says:

    I understand that you are intellectually challenged…so I’ll go slow. Read carefully.
    Just because a computer crashes does not mean the endeavor is a waste of time. Computers and websites crash. Regularly. In spite of crashing computers and websites are an integral part of the modern world. I know you find the modern world a big scary place. Many Republicans do.
    Now pay close attention here…Obamacare is a very complex piece of health care reform legislation. It is not a computer or a website.
    I know your irrational fears are making you very emotional. But it’s OK. Obamacare will cover your mental illness.

  12. C. Clavin says:

    @Jenos Idanian #13:
    Apparently you understand less than JKB.

  13. David M says:

    @C. Clavin:

    Apparently you [Jenos] understand less than JKB.

    There’s no way to prove that one way or the other, as their willful ignorance prevents anything meaningful from being determined.

  14. John Burgess says:

    @C. Clavin: Does that CAD program help you find the points you’ve missed?

  15. Tyrell says:

    Maybe they should try upgrading from Windows 95 to XP.

  16. grumpy realist says:

    @Tyrell: Cue all the jokes about Vista as being a virus of its own…

  17. bill says:

    @john personna: true, but i doubt if that was the only time that day (or hour) that it crashed- seems to be an ongoing issue that nobody is to question.

  18. An Interested Party says:

    …seems to be an ongoing issue that nobody is to question.

    Such a strawman…who is saying no one can question this…

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  20. al-Ameda says:


    true, but i doubt if that was the only time that day (or hour) that it crashed- seems to be an ongoing issue that nobody is to question.

    Incredible that nobody has questioned these repeated problems – it must be a conspiracy.