FLASHBACK: New Republican Party Site Crashes Hours After Launch

For three weeks the Republican Party has been frantically railing about the alleged incompetence of the Obama administration due to the notoriously botched rollout of the website for the Affordable Care Act’s insurance marketplace. Predictable calls for the resignation of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius have come from numerous Republican partisans like Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Pat Roberts, Roy Blunt, Ken Cuccinelli, and Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee.

The condemnation from the RNC chief is particularly notable considering their own history of troubled website launches. In October of 2009, The RNC’s GOP.com was to debut with a grand fanfare trumpeting the arrival of the Republican Party into the 21st century with a modern social network that would set the standard for online politicking. It didn’t quite work out that way.

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When the all new GOP.com premiered it was a train wreck of glitches, bugs, and failure. It crashed entirely within hours of the launch. No one was able to log on. Later it accidentally posted the administrator passwords. A list of GOP accomplishments ended five years earlier in 2004. It falsely listed baseball legend Jackie Robinson as a Republican “hero” (He wrote in his autobiography that “By and large Republicans had ignored blacks and sometimes handpicked a few servile leaders in the black community to be their token ‘niggers.'”). And a “Future Leaders” page was conspicuously (and presciently) blank.

Politico reported that the RNC’s New Media Director, Todd Herman had a familiar excuse, saying that the site was struggling from attracting “an enormous amount of traffic.” And then-RNC chairman Michael Steele laughably responded that “It’s a good thing when you get another email from Todd saying, ‘It’s down again.'”

For the record, CGI Federal, the contractor responsible for the ObamaCare website, is deeply connected to the Republican Party. Buzzfeed reports that…

“[A]ccording to Federal Election Commission records, that company’s PAC gave more to House Republicans than House Democrats during the 2012 cycle — including a $2,000 check for the GOP’s chief scandal investigator, Oversight Committee Chair Darrell Issa. What’s more, executives of CGI Federal personally gave more than twice as much to GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney than to President Obama. The contractor has also feasted on more than $2.4 billion worth of IT work dating back to the early Bush Administration.”

Isn’t that interesting? Especially considering the new and unsupported complaints that the company got the gig due to some sort of sweetheart relationship with the President.

For the Republican Party to take such a strident stand against the President and his team, when they experienced a similarly embarrassing website flop, is hypocrisy on an Olympian scale. The GOP.com website wasn’t nearly the technological challenge that Healthcare.gov is. But Republicans seem to think that an admittedly poor rollout for Democrats is an unforgivable debacle, but for Republicans it’s a “good thing.”

What’s more, the disaster that plagued the GOP was merely a setback for their public relations efforts. At least the Obama administration is attempting to do something that will benefit millions of people, save billions of dollars, and even preserve the lives of Americans who might otherwise suffer due to the greed of unregulated corporations.


24 thoughts on “FLASHBACK: New Republican Party Site Crashes Hours After Launch

  1. There is no Law that requires signing up(or else) for something on the GOP website as the affordable care act does – the GOP doesn’t deserve any kind of praise certainly, but this is a joke of a reach. The people will either buy into the idea that problems happen and cut him some slack or they won’t – spinning as you’re trying to do is silly. Are you paid to stick up for these guys or is it just blind faith in the democrat messiah that you can’t bring yourself to criticize him. If the individual mandate didn’t exist – probably not as big a deal.

    • Geez, you really are the densest, most repetitive troll I’ve ever seen. I explicitly noted the botched rollout of ObamaCare. How is that a defense? This article does not excuse the administration, it points out the hypocrisy of their critics. And whether or not the GOP site requires sign ups is irrelevant. Their site was much simpler and they still couldn’t pull it off. That’s the point.

      • Well, Mark, you site facts and even source them. I can see how this can be confusing for those who aren’t used to them.

        Here’s another fact that I wasn’t aware of until recently. The new healthcare law specifically prohibits any kind of criminal proceedings for those who don’t pay the penalty for not enrolling. (Page #131, I believe). So if any glitches prevent you from enrolling, there is no “or else”.

        • In addition, healthcare.gov is not the only channel by which enrollment is possible, which Republicans conveniently NEVER mention. People can enroll by phone or on paper, which any legislator who was really interested in assisting his/her constituents would be trumpeting instead of pointing fingers and tsk-tsking.

        • Defense of the federal government from one who gets his paycheck from them is amazingly predictable – get back to work, I don’t pay you to prop up your employer. Yes, I’m sure you will always come to its defense and blow smoke up your own ass as to why it is sooo good. I’m sure the IRS will be forgiving if someone were to say “fuck you – I’m not paying your fine”…if You believe that, I’ve got a few bridges to sell you sucker. Only time will tell, but I’m betting that my prediction will be the outcome.

          • If delusion and unadulterated hatred was a job, you would be the editor of its trade journal. You just, don’t believe his point?? Why? He even has evidence to back his shit up, why instantly dismiss it? You HATE government and you hate this guy for working for it. Right? Why is that? Is it because it actually does create jobs for people? I wanna know your origin story Steve. What made you scream ‘Governmeeeeeeent!!!’ up into the cruel night? What event gave you your superpowers of batshit and reality denial? I NEED TO KNOW.

      • Mark: even you must admit that comparing some nascent 2009 website to today is not realistic. I mean, the internet was invented just one year earlier in 2008 and no one really had any experience creating what we now call a “website.” Obama on the other hand had 5 years of experience to draw on. Hell, he could have used the RNC “website” as a model.

        • You may be right. We’re lucky the GOP does anything in the 2000s. The rest of their mindset is firmly rooted in the Dark Ages.

      • A token criticism doesn’t make your ridiculous comparison any more reasonable. You’re entire purpose is to deflect criticism from those who hate this president. You don’t like the source of the criticism – fine. But the comparison YOU chose is a total joke and you know it.

        • I guess ‘token’ is now defined as ‘main point’.

  2. I honestly don’t know why these problems with one avenue of enrollment are such a big deal. If you can sit at a computer to do it you can sit and use a phone to do it. Also…it’s a website…if it isn’t working just try again later…what’s the big fukin deal?? Now if the insurance I got from it doesn’t wanna work when I need it to, that would be a ‘botched law’, no wait that would be private insurance companies’ faults…and since when is the website the ACA itself?? ‘The website isn’t 100% so the law needs to go!’…?? It’s cheaper insurance!! Why the flaming hell would I let a website that needs work deter me from that??? I wouldn’t!! And I didn’t in fact. I got me free coverage from my state, and my state’s working on single payer. I gotta say, I rather like them apples. Now if I get drunk with my buddies that I haven’t seen in a decade and end up breaking my big toe I don’t have to live in AGONY for several weeks, I can actually go to a doctor!! You can’t afford shit on minimum wage, but now my life is made BETTER. Imagine that GOP, teabaggers, Scott and Steve, my life has been made better by democrats that actually do what they were elected to do, their fucking jobs!! WHAT A FUCKIN NIGHTMARE!!!

    • How exactly is your life actually better – you can’t afford anything on minimum wage because your wealth and purchasing power is being sucked away by government – the government you praise so much. Government as it exists today is hurting the people you claim it helps by stealing their purchasing power through the most insidious of taxes – inflation. You’re a sucker if you believe anything else. We’re all being hurt by it and raising the debt limit will only make it worse. Your agony is only starting and it will only get worse as government grows and takes more from us all to pay for all the unfunded items you know are setting out there – the screwing your taking now will be a pleasant memory compared to when that occurs.

      • Your paranoia of an omnipotent government controlling everyone’s lives is getting so delusional it’s pathetic. Now you are ranting about “the most insidious of taxes – inflation,” when there is virtually no inflation. All you do is spew right-wing talking points and you think that’s a coherent argument. Fox News is not getting their money’s worth with your trolling efforts.

        • Mark, why to don’t you open you eyes and see things for what they are. You can’t be that dumb or blind to reality. This isn’t right wing stuff, it’s just reality and you know it but won’t acknowledge it. The government gets to spend the currency at it’s full value – by the time it gets into our hands, it’s lost some value due to the effects of currency supply expansion – therefore you and I get what’s left. And the you and I also includes elederly on fixed incomes like social security and people living on minimum wage – the very people you claim to care about. I think I give a shit about them more than you do.

        • Hey Mark, add to the you and I above ALL low income workers, not just minimum wage people…you blind lemming.

          • Jesus, you think inflation is the biggest most relevant reason why minimum wage earners (and myriad others) can’t afford a comfortable life? YOU ARE DAFT, totally wrong, on more than one level. You think government is at fault for everything!! There’s no doubt at all that that’s a small small factor, but do you genuinely believe that there’s nothing more at play there? It’s an economy for christs sake!! It’s a bit more complex than just ‘inflation did it’.

            Yeah mark!! You’re so blind to not think that a small level of inflation in the biggest economy in the history of the species is the only reason for its ills! Open your eyes mark!!

            You steve, have been convinced, I’m sure not by yourself, that there are no big problems nor solutions outside of government. How does that happen??

            • Wow, I sometimes think we don’t inhabit the same plain of existence. I wasn’t sure how to respond, but then empathy seemed to jump out at me as what you need.
              Classic denial – first step in the grieving process. You are gradually losing the ignorance in which you’ve lived your life and you need to experience the 5 stages of that process before you can heal – I’ll help you.
              Denial – check. Anger – you’re always angry, but it will eventually connect to the realization you’ve been duped, Then all you have is Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance – you’re on you way to waking up.

          • Correction, solutions from government.

            • I guess responding to the substance of my comment was too much to handle. Not surprised, you can never logically defend your own views beyond what some pundit dumbed down and shoved in your head. Typical Steve.

              You’re becoming like the comedy relief character in a mid 90’s sitcom title sequence. You know, the one that comes in at the end and quickly does something foolish and every other character looks at him angrily at first but then he does that goofy shrug and smile thing and then everyone kinda just chuckles and instantly forgives him. You’re that guy to our small little community here. We always just end up chuckling and forgiving you and expect to see you again at some point to cause pointless mischief, cause you just aren’t capable of knowing any better.

              Or you could come up with valid arguments that don’t amount to red herrings, straw men, and slippery slopes with a little irrational dismissal of evidence thrown on top. I still hold out hope for you Steve. Abandon everything you believe in and come to the side that’s been proven relevant time and again throughout history. Bliss can’t be that good.

            • You are a waste of time – responding in any other way is going no where. I could give you all the facts in the world, but you’re unable to grasp it – hell, your buried comment about minor inflation is so out of touch with true inflation rates, I’m not going to bother. I prefer to let you suffer in your angry world blaming everyone else for your issues. In fact, your post arguing your views on inflation was so full of bullshit, I couldn’t feel anything but empathy for you. In the end, it makes no difference, I’ll continue moving forward living a decent life while you cry about how hard it is for you and how you will be better off with this person/party or that person/party in power – I’ll make both work. Try reading something besides party propaganda sometime and you’ll find the answers – until then, live with your head buried in the sand.

            • A couple more thing – I really can’t get past my total contempt for your view of government – it’s not possible. I see your view of government as an absolute danger to me and my family’s freedom as well as every man woman and child’s freedom to run our lives as we see fit.
              Also, these blogs attract the most extreme views from both sides – so I don’t an end where we will ever agree on anything.

            • You’re a master of self contradiction.

              Why pass up the chance to school me with all those facts you’re talking about? You’ve never once proven anything you’ve ever asserted here, ever. Let alone with all these reinforcing facts at your command. I’ve never even seen you try, I always try to get better arguments out of you but it has never been fruitful. C’mon Steve. School me, use all those facts.

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