Kathleen Sebelius Focuses on Saving One Job: Hers
The Examiner reported on Friday that HHS Secretary Sebelius “will soon be back to doing what she does best – campaigning for President Obama.” The Secretary was scheduled to appear at several events over the weekend in New Hampshire. This development shouldn’t surprise most observers, for playing politics has been a major part of Secretary Sebelius’ time in office:
- As we previously noted, the Office of Special Counsel recently determined that Secretary Sebelius’ prior campaign activities violated the federal Hatch Act prohibitions on federal officials campaigning;
- The Government Accountability Office has criticized an HHS demonstration project as having little scientific or programmatic value – but the program minimizes the impact of Obamacare’s Medicare Advantage cuts until after the election, thereby giving it political value; and
- HHS has issued grants to states that are being used to pay Hollywood celebrities to promote Obamacare on TV shows, amounting to little more than a public propaganda campaign for Obamacare and the President.
Meanwhile, while the Secretary keeps playing politics, the actual work of governing goes unaddressed:
- The Secretary admitted in April that the Administration didn’t have a backup plan in place should the Supreme Court strike down Obamacare – even though it would “probably” have been wise for the Department to have one;
- Perhaps because the Secretary was derelict in her duties to prepare for the consequences of the Court’s decision, the nation’s governors have been waiting months for official guidance from HHS on how to interpret the ruling – to say nothing of the myriad other implementation issues still bogged down within HHS; and
- As we pointed out last week, HHS has allowed up to $11 billion in abusive and potentially fraudulent increases in Medicare payments to go unquestioned for years.
Given this abysmal track record, some might think Secretary Sebelius should spend less time trying to save her job and more time trying to do it.