If you are a health policy reporter for the Washington Post and take upon yourself the role of cheerleader for Obamacare, the task can be quite challenging. Therefore one must admire the effort that Sarah Kliff displays into putting a positive spin on this bit of pathetically sad news:
The District of Columbia's insurance marketplace has enrolled exactly five people in health plans, according to documents released by the Senate Finance Committee on Friday.
And here is our intrepid reporter squeezing blood out of that incredibly dry ObamaCare turnip:
First things first: What the Senate Finance Committee reported Friday were letters from the insurers who sell on the DC Health Benefit Link: CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, Kaiser Permanente, UnitedHealthcare and Aetna.
...The DC Health Link contends that these response letters don't tell the entire story.
"That is not an accurate depiction of the strong level of interest in the District of Columbia in obtaining quality, affordable health insurance," DC HealthLink spokesman Richard Sorian wrote in an e-mail.
He says that, as of Oct. 21, 321 people who created accounts selected a health plan for enrollment. Think of this as dropping an item in your shopping cart on Amazon (which is owned by the same person as The Washington Post, Jeff Bezos). Among those, 164 people have asked for an invoice from the health insurance plan that they selected.
Thank you for that clarification, Sarah. So instead of D.C. enrollments being in the single digits they are really in the low triple digits...if they end up actually paying. Meanwhile I urge Ms Kliff not to overlook the great news out of Delaware where the ObamaCare enrollments quadrupled in a month from one to four.