Donald Trump Still Lying His Ass Off

Even by the standards of American politics, where distortion and exaggeration are practically a form of currency, Donald Trump stands out for his total disregard for the truth. He gets up and just rants, throwing out false claims like a Gatlin gun of bullshit. The latest:

At one point in a July 11, 2015, speech in Phoenix, he took aim at the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama’s signature health care law.

He singled out the website, which was unveiled in the fall of 2013 with a panoply of bugs and glitches, calling it “the $5 billion website for Obamacare, which never worked. Still doesn’t work.”

PolitiFact documents that both claims are false, it didn’t cost $5 billion and it’s working pretty darn well after a rough start.

The cost of the website has been a bone of contention ever since its launch, partly because federal contracting is complex, involving some 60 major contracts. Our friends at the Washington Post Fact Checker grappled with this question over the course of two separate reports that included several interim updates as new data surfaced.

Officially, the Department of Health and Human Services says the website cost $834 million. That’s the number offered by then-HHS Secretary-designate Sylvia Mathews Burwell at a Senate hearing on May 8, 2014.

As of Feb. 28, 2014, Burwell told lawmakers, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services — the part of HHS responsible for the website — “has obligated a total of approximately $834 million on marketplace-related (information technology) contracts and interagency agreements.”

Not everyone has taken that figure at face value. Bloomberg Government undertook a study that used a more generous definition of the relevant federal spending. In the study, released in September 2014, researchers included several additional costs beyond the government’s official estimate — $387 million in spending by the Internal Revenue Service and other agencies beyond HHS, as well as a $300 million contract to process paper applications, and additional spending by HHS after the cutoff for Burwell’s estimate.

Using this broader net, Bloomberg Government came up with a figure of $2.1 billion. That’s bigger than the official estimate, but it’s still not as large as what Trump said.


This part of Trump’s claim is easier to debunk. The proof is in the millions of Americans who have used the website to obtain insurance coverage.

According to the most recent data released by HHS, covering the open-enrollment period between November 2014 to February 2015, a total of 11.7 million Americans selected or were automatically enrolled in an insurance plan for 2015 using the online marketplaces. Of that, 8.84 million signed up through the federal marketplace — — with the remainder signing up through state-run websites. (These figures are not limited to those who have already made their first premium payment.)

So, clearly, the site is working.

They rate this claim as false, like nearly everything Trump says.

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  • Modusoperandi

    Using this broader net, Bloomberg Government came up with a figure of $2.1 billion.

    Ouch. Talk about a boondogle! Typical Big Government! They should have lreached out to multiple private, Job Creating Free Market companies for its creation instead of contracting it out.

  • eoraptor

    Modus, um…

  • cervantes

    Mitt Romney lied just as much during his presidential campaign. I don’t think T. Ronald Dump particularly stands out in that regard. As a matter of fact he isn’t exactly lying, he just blurts out whatever comes into his dim frontal cortex, without regard for truth or falsehood either way.

  • theschwa

    Good catch, Modus! I hope Trump looks into these so-called “contracts” to make sure no illegal Mexicans were involved! And if they were, that they were actually doing the work we paid for and not out raping and murdering and spreading disease, as they are wont to do!!

  • wreck

    It would be easier to just report when (if) the toupee says something that’s not complete bullshit.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    Donald Trump Still Lying His Ass Off

    Aw, c’mon: available evidence indicates approximately half of it is still there.

  • busterggi

    And his alternative is???

    Somehow REpubs always promise alternatives but never say what they are.

  • Marcus Ranum

    Oddly, none of the conservatives are complaining about the FBI’s “Virtual Case File” program – which, in terms of boondogglery, leaves the obamacare site in the children’s seats. And that’s without even getting into the DoD’s boondogglery, which doggles the boon so thoroughly that it will never unboon again.

  • Modusoperandi

    busterggi “And his alternative is???”

    Trump will fire Obamacare.


    “Somehow REpubs always promise alternatives but never say what they are.”

    Wrong. Republicans do have plans and, outside of some minor differences they all agree on the most important point: Not Obamacare. As such, they plan to repeal it in its entirety. After that, the rest will just fall in to place. And by “the rest” I mean “nothing” or, if you insist on a plan, “Obamacare without the Medicaid expansion, the Individual or Employer Mandates and the ‘no rejection for preexisting conditions’, and anything involving paying for it.” Being Fiscal Conservatives, though, they’ll keep Obama’s vicious Medicare cuts they ran (and won) an election on.

  • colnago80

    Laugh it up. The Donald is now leading the field in several polls, in some of them by 3 points. The speculation is that the Fascist News Channel will have no choice but to include him amongst the 10 participants. The Rethuglican establishment, such as it is, is shitting bricks.

  • Trebuchet

    @10, NukeIranNow80: Who was leading at this time four years ago? Were they nominated? Elected?

    I do, of course, look forward to Trump and the squirrel on his head in the debates.

  • llewelly

    Yep. laugh it up !

    however polls are of very poor reliability this early.

  • colnago80

    Re Trebuchet @ #11

    The Donald says that he doesn’t wear a toupee, that the hair is his. I think that last time, there were fewer clowns in the car then there are this time. As far as I am concerned, the longer he hangs around, the better.

  • colnago80

    Re Trebuchlet @ #11

    No, NukeIranYesterday80.

  • Trebuchet


    {nitpick}Gatlin[b]g[/b] gun.{/nitpick}

  • sugarfrosted

    colnago doesn’t want to nuke Iran because he’s worried about them getting a nuke. He’s into genocide for genocide’s sake. As he revealed today. I’m glad he wants radiation to poison my best friend’s family in Turkmenistan as well as start a cold war with China. Given his illiteracy when it comes to geopolitic, I doubt he even knew that Turkmenistan was one of the countries that border Iran until this vary moment.

  • colnago80

    This just in, the Donald steps in a pot full of crap, criticizing John McCain’s war record. This from someone who never served in the military, getting multiple deferments.

  • Reginald Selkirk

    Yes, Trump’s latest comments about John McCain are going to cost him.

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  • freehand

    colnago80 says: This just in, the Donald steps in a pot full of crap, criticizing John McCain’s war record. This from someone who never served in the military, getting multiple deferments.


    Too violent?