By Jonathan Easley - 11/06/13 11:24 AM EST
Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen SebeliusKathleen SebeliusLeaked email: Podesta pushed Tom Steyer for Obama’s Cabinet Romney: Trump victory 'very possible' Fighting for assisted living facilities MORE faced a grilling from a Democratic-led Senate panel on Wednesday over the problems plaguing the ObamaCare website.
Sen. Max BaucusMax BaucusChina moves to lift ban on US beef Overnight Healthcare: Zika fight stalls government funding talks | Census finds big drop in uninsured | Mental health bill faces wait Glover Park Group now lobbying for Lyft MORE (D-Mt.), the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, kicked off the hearing by chastising the secretary for the bungled rollout of HealthCare.gov, the federal government's malfunctioning online enrollment portal.
“This is unacceptable,” Baucus told Sebelius. “It has been disappointing to hear members of the administration say they didn’t see the problems coming.”
Baucus said that the updates Congress received in the run-up to the launch were “totally unacceptable.”
“But that’s in the past and now it’s time to fix it,” he added.
Baucus is one of the primary architects of the Affordable Care Act, but he has not shied from speaking out against the rollout. In a radio interview last week, Baucus, who is not seeking reelection next year, called the website “Humpty Dumpty” because officials hadn’t been able to put it back together again.
But on Wednesday, he also bemoaned those conservatives who he says took his words out of context when before the launch he referred to the “train wreck” that would result if officials couldn’t fix the problems.