Earlier this summer, congressional democrats lost their collective minds when the Trump administration announced plans to cut Obamacare's marketing budget from $100 million down to $10 million (see: Democrats Furious After Trump Announces 90% Cut To Obamacare Marketing Funds). Here was Chuck Schumer's response:
Sen. Schumer: "The Trump administration is deliberately attempting to sabotage our health care system." pic.twitter.com/YjTOqOYQ9J— Liam Martin (@LiamWBZ) August 31, 2017
Now, per a note from MSNBC, we're getting some new data on just how effective Obama's $100 million marketing budget has been. According to data supplied by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, one group in South Dakota received $200,000 worth of federal funding and managed to sign up just one person.
A group that is supposed to help Native Americans sign up for Obamacare coverage in South Dakota received $200,000 in federal funds to support its efforts — and managed to sign up just one person in an Obamacare plan, the Trump administration said Wednesday.
The group, the Great Plains Tribal Chairmen's Health Board, had better luck in North Dakota — where it assisted 67 people in shopping for and enrolling in an Obamacare plan that went into effect in 2017.
But in that state, GPTCHB received an additional $154,000 in federal cash for its efforts.
That works out to nearly $3,000 per Obamacare enrollee of GPTCHB's in North Dakota.
In both Dakotas, the group's work cost taxpayers $5,200 per enrollee, according to data from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Of course, GPTCHB was not alone among so-called Obamacare Navigators in falling woefully short of its goals — or in getting a lot of federal money while doing so. In fact, the top 10 Obamacare "Navigators" received a total of $2.8 million in federal funds and managed to sign up a mere 314 people...roughly $9,000 per applicant.
CMS said that besides GPTCHB, there were another 16 Obamacare Navigators that each had enrolled fewer than 100 people each for 2017 plans — at an average cost of almost $5,000 per enrollee.
And the 10 Navigators that received the most federal funds got a total of $2.77 million to sign up just 314 people in Obamacare plans, according to CMS.
Nationally, "Navigators received $62.5 million in federal grants to enroll 81,426 people — just 0.7 percent of total enrollees" in Obamacare plans, CMS said.
And 78 percent of Navigators failed to reach their enrollment goals "while spending $50 million," CMS said.
Meanwhile, despite the fact that $63 million was spent on signing up just 0.7% of total enrollees, former Obama spokeswoman Lori Lodes would like for you to know there are several reasons why you should doubt this hard data from the CMS and instead believe her propaganda.
"The value of a program should be judged by its results and not by the amount of money spent," said Caitlin Oakley, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Health and Human Services Department, the parent of CMS.
"Last year, the Navigator program helped less than 1 percent of enrollees sign up for Obamacare at a cost of nearly $63 million," Oakley said.
Lori Lodes, a former spokeswoman for CMS in the Obama administration, said there are several reasons to doubt that the Navigator program is performing as poorly as the Trump administration suggests.
"This doesn't paint a full picture," Lodes said of CMS's data.
But sure, Obamacare continues to work fantastically and is clearly in high demand.