Paul Ryan: HHS secretary should step down over Obamacare
October 22nd, 2013
06:56 PM ET
10 months ago

Paul Ryan: HHS secretary should step down over Obamacare

(CNN) - Rep. Paul Ryan on Tuesday joined a growing list of Republicans who want Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to step down over rampant problems in the launch of Obamacare’s HealthCare.gov.

The 2012 GOP vice presidential nominee was on a conference call with reporters, helping fellow Republican and Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli make the case against a Medicaid expansion in the state championed by Cuccinelli’s opponent, Democrat Terry McAuliffe.

Cuccinelli has already said that Sebelius should step down. When Ryan was asked if he felt the same way, he responded: “I do agree with that.”

“This rollout has been a fiasco,” the House Budget Committee chairman said, and “not just because they have bad tech,” but because the entirety of the law is flawed.

Sebelius gave members of Congress the impression the health care website’s launch would be flawless despite knowing otherwise, said the congressman from Wisconsin.

“I think some people should be held responsible,” Ryan added.

Much of the call was devoted to Cuccinelli attempting to paint the differences between himself and McAuliffe. Cuccinelli, the Virginia attorney general, argued that his opponent has little experience and would drive the state to financial ruin by expanding Medicaid.

McAuliffe, a businessman and former chairman of the Democratic National Committee, has accused Cuccinelli of tea party extremism. Two weeks before the election, he leads Cuccinelli by single digits in the latest public opinion polls.

–CNN’s Bryan Koenig contributed to this report.


Filed under: Health care • Kathleen Sebelius • Ken Cuccinelli • Paul Ryan
soundoff (365 Responses)
  1. Jack

    No, you resign!

    October 22, 2013 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  2. pbtexas

    Every one after the fact is claiming that he / she could have done better. Remember these GOPers for the last so many years since passage of ACA have been trying to repeal the law. Then there was our very misguided Supreme Court that seemed to be leaning towards declaring it unconstitutional. Finally, in mid 2012, they declared it constitutional. So how much time and funding was there to implement the law? Also, all the people like Mr. Ryan has been shouting at the top of their lungs that American people do not want ACA. If 20+ million are trying to get on what it has to offer, they cannot connect the dots that this law is offering something to the people that they really need and want. Anything new has some hiccups at the start. Instead, just being usual obstructionists and throwing stones, give a chance to the program to iron out the glitches.

    October 22, 2013 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  3. jimranes

    Paul Ryan and his Tea Party colleagues should pay the $24 billion they took out of the US economy. Ms. Sebelius can resign after the ACA roll out is fixed and works like it should.

    October 22, 2013 10:21 pm at 10:21 pm |
  4. SEAL Team Alpha and Omega

    Anything with Paul Loser Cry Baby Ryan's face attached to it is not worth reading. All America needs to know about this permanent loser is that he favors starving grandma and flushing her social security down the toilet. He needs to go back to Wisconsin and crawl in a ditch and suffocate himself with his hilarious budget plan.

    October 22, 2013 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  5. Robert N. constant

    It is Paul Ryan who should resign, voting with the Tea Party to not accept the Senate deal. This guy wants to run with the fox and hunt with the hound. He wants to curry favor with the Tea Party, but appear to the general public to be more moderate. He wears his Catholicism on his sleeve but then requires his interns to read books by a materialistic Atheist. H wants to seem like a nice guy, but champions legislation that would balance the budgets on the backs of retired folks living on Social Security . Paul Ryan is Ted Cruz light.

    October 22, 2013 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  6. skytag

    i agree with him. She blew it. I understand that a complex new system like this will have a few bugs, but there's no excuse for it to have problems this significant. I don't blame Obama because presidents don't manage these kinds of projects, but that was part of Sebelius' job.

    October 22, 2013 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  7. Bob

    Great talent he has there, good to know he'll find work as a used car salesman when he get's his ass booted out of congress(wishful thinking). That speaking out of both sides of your mouth has potential somewhere,I'msure.

    October 22, 2013 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  8. Anonymous

    You first, Paul.

    October 22, 2013 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  9. Robert

    At my company, when there is a failure of some kind, we put all our energy in resolving the issue, not at pointing blame. I love my company!!! Too bad more companies, individuals, governments, can't work this way.

    October 22, 2013 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  10. Paul

    One Republican manufactured crisis after another. Can't they work on jobs, immigration, tax reform, mental health and a whole host of other problems this country has? Instead they are fixated on wasting our time and money on repealing ACA 42 times, shutting down the gov't, and holding up paying our countries bills. The party of saying "NO' has got to go.

    October 22, 2013 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  11. Bob

    your party shutdown the government for 2 weeks over this act, you resign first.

    October 22, 2013 10:35 pm at 10:35 pm |
  12. Hotdog

    This guy is pathetic. Look and what he represents and what he has proposed as a means of balancing the budget on the backs of the unfortunate. He submitted a budget proposal that he thought that was fair but the cuts were not reasonable but no called for his resignation. He also voted for the shutting down of our government and he also voted to keep it closed because of the ACA which cost us $25B but once again no one ask him to resign.

    October 22, 2013 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm |
  13. DH

    Bush&cheney should have resigned after lying to invade Iraq causing the death of 4,000 Americans. ACA will save 20 million Americans by giving them affordable healthcare.

    October 22, 2013 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  14. spudnik56

    Paul Ryan is worse than a petulant little girl that can't figure out why boys don't ask her out...

    October 22, 2013 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  15. OrmondGeorge

    Paul Ryan,
    If the lack of success, a problem, a complication, a failure to obtain your objective, is cause for a Government official to resign, then you and all of your "One Term President" TEA Party Z"Patriots" should resign – you DID fail to kill ACA.

    October 22, 2013 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  16. The Location Station

    Oh, those dang Republican'ts, always looking for heads to roll, blame to fix, legislation to stymie, presidents to disrespect (except their own), budgets to imbalance, cronies to protect, the unlimited profits of benefactors to fatten, and votes to suppress. I'm sure millions of us will be referring to Republican values and virtues to make personnel decisions for the President's Cabinet.

    October 22, 2013 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  17. Evergreen

    The HHS Director should step down right after the GOP reimburse the 24 BILLION DOLLARS they flushed down the toilet. We will eventually have something to show for the money spent on the website. We will never have anything to show for the 24 BILLION dollars wasted on a hissy fit. Yes, someone should be held accountable for this. What say you, Rubio.

    October 22, 2013 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  18. Chris

    Seems Mr Ryan has a short memory. Anytime a problem occurs his solution is that the person in charge of that particular department should resign. An ongoing theme in the Republican party. I 'm uncertain as to why Mr Ryan hasn't resigned yet, considering his failure to anticipate and solve the issues confronting him on a daily basis. He has yet to compromise on anything, and remains a selfish child in the political arena.
    The idea of firing people for a failure such as this is foolish. If that gained traction there would be no government at all, and Congress itself would not exist.
    Stop wating time pointingfingers and fix the damn problems

    October 22, 2013 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    Paul Ryan should resign; with absolutely nothing to contribute.

    October 22, 2013 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  20. David

    I think the government shutdown and taking the U.S. to the edge of default is a bit more of a disaster than a faulty website rollout. Since he supported the shutdown, maybe Mr. Ryan should be the one considering resigning … not to mention the Tea Party members of Congress as well.

    October 22, 2013 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  21. Bubba

    “I think some people should be held responsible,” Ryan said.
    What he really means is "I think non-Republicans should be held responsible,”
    The GOP's lack of shame iis amazing, and downright amusing.

    October 22, 2013 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  22. nuclear mike

    Either the President knows nothing or it ain't his fault!!
    Sounds like HOPE is not a plan afterall!!!

    Whose lying now???

    October 22, 2013 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  23. ken

    When will Ryan call for Rand Paul and Mitch McConnel to resign.. they got billions in the bill to fix a dam project that was projected at 775M and now is 2+ Billion.
    Talk about gross mismanagment and pure hypocrisy.
    Were are you Paul Ryan when it comes to your own party?
    You just want to Bash bash bash..

    October 22, 2013 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  24. FM

    Dear Paul Ryan – When you accomplish anything, and I mean ANYTHING, of note, then you can ask other people to resign. So the website was flawed – oooh, scary! When Facebook doesn't work do you ask for Mark Zuckerberg's head? If you don't have anything productive or sane to add to the forward progress of this country, then please spare us your utterly phony indignation. Phony, small-minded, petty and destructive – the new credo of your party. I don't buy it for a second.

    October 22, 2013 11:09 pm at 11:09 pm |
  25. Domenick Cama

    Yes, there'll be glitches in huge new programs. So, fix 'em. The GOP is not trying to make this program work. All their energy is destructive. Now fighting in the states to prevent it from working well. If only they could take their time and energy, take the 24 billion Standard & Poors calculated we lost during the fruitless budget/Obamacare nonsense and work to make the program quality #1. There's nothing wrong with the premise to provide health care to all citizens. Work towards getting it right. To do nothing to help, to be destructive, and now call for Silbelius to resign, is absurdly hypocritical. I say roll your sleeves up, get to work, or vote them out.

    October 22, 2013 11:10 pm at 11:10 pm |
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