First-day jitters

First-day jitters
First-day jitters
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It’s obviously an unacceptable situation: technical glitches, a confused public, and widespread reports of people who wait and wait for a struggling system to work.

Clearly, there’s only one sensible solution, which fair-minded people in both parties should be able to accept: Florida will no longer be allowed to hold elections.

What, you thought I was talking about something else?

Millions of Americans logged on to the new Obamacare health insurance exchanges Tuesday, looking to sign up for health coverage for the first time. The public response was so great that in some states, it swamped the exchange websites, prompting error messages, delays, and crashing sites on the opening day.

The new exchanges opened the same day as the government officially shut down prompted by House Republicans who continued to insist on attaching anti-Obamacare language to a spending bill despite a veto threat from President Obama. The shutdown went into effect but the tactic did not stop Obamacare and the exchanges, which allow millions of previously uninsured Americans to shop dozens of insurance options. But predicted “glitches” slowed the process on opening day.

For supporters of the Affordable Care Act, today is a breakthrough to be proud of. For the first time in American history, millions of eligible families that need access to basic medical care are signing up for coverage they deserve.

For opponents of “Obamacare,” today is a day to jump up and down screaming, “OMG! Glitches! Outrage!”

For the record, let’s just note five basic truths. First, we knew this would happen, and it’s really not worth freaking out over. Second, the glitches are largely the result of excessive demand, which is good news for the Affordable Care Act, which hopes to take advantage of strong public demand.

Third, those who are struggling with crashed websites don’t need to panic – the open-enrollment period will last for the next several months. Just keep trying to get through. Fourth, many of the people whining the loudest today are the same folks who’ve worked to sabotage the Affordable Care Act, which suggests they’re exceedingly loud concerns over the efficacy of the system aren’t quite sincere.

And finally, for those suggesting server outages are proof the law “isn’t ready,” save it.

“Consider that just a couple of weeks ago, Apple rolled out a new mobile operating system, and within days, they found a glitch, so they fixed it,” President Obama said this morning. “I don’t remember anybody suggesting Apple should stop selling iPhones or iPads or threatening to shut down the company if they didn’t. That’s not how we do things in America.”