Time is now to stop bleeding at Cover Oregon


Oregon Senate Republicans

Cover Oregon has become a poster child for the failed leadership of the current Democrat regime in Oregon

Salem, OR – Senate Republican Leader Ted Ferrioli (R-John Day) called this past weekend for Democrats to join with Senate Republicans to hold an immediate special session for the purpose of dissolving Cover Oregon.

“Next year will be too late,” said Ferrioli. “Oregonians have suffered more than two years of broken promises and hundreds of millions of wasted taxpayer dollars. There should be no delay in putting the dysfunction and waste of this agency behind us and getting back to the business of helping working families find affordable healthcare.”

The Cover Oregon Board has already admitted failure and agreed to hand off the exchange’s function to a generic federal website, but more than 150 Cover Oregon staff continue to collect paychecks for work on “marketing, outreach and plan management.”

“The Governor was willing to call a special session to give Oregon corporations tax certainty. He should be willing to join with Republicans in a call for a special session to clean up the mess that Cover Oregon has become,” said Ferrioli. “The distraction of Cover Oregon needs to go away. If calls for the end of Cover Oregon are anything more than electioneering, Democrats will join Republican leaders in signing a petition for an immediate special session.”

Under Article IV, Section 10a of the Oregon Constitution, a special session can be called by a petition signed by a majority of the members in each chamber.

Cover Oregon has become a poster child for the failed leadership of the current Democrat regime in Oregon. Despite generous funding, Democrats were unable to deliver on the promise of affordable and accessible health care for Oregon families through an online portal.

“Oregon families hoping for affordable health care have been disappointed by leaders who broke their promise to deliver a working health exchange,” said Ferrioli. “Democrat legislative leaders even disbanded the committee that was charged with the responsibility for oversight.”

The media has well-documented the mismanagement and lack of oversight that led one of the nation’s most highly touted and best funded health exchange to fail before it even opened its doors.

Statewide elected officials, all Democrats, from the Governor to the legislature’s Democrat majorities ignored repeated warnings, missed deadlines and key performance shortfalls in the exchange’s building phase, demonstrating an arrogance blinded by the belief that Cover Oregon “could not fail.”

Poor planning, vague goals, unreasonable expectations and lack of oversight meant more than $300 million in taxpayer money was misspent, leaving a website that still does not work almost a year after its promised launch. The program’s high profile leaders have resigned, been fired or departed. Incriminating questions about the relationship between contractors and key exchange staff have been raised but never answered.