Raleigh, N.C. — Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan is asking for an official probe into the failed launch of the website portal for the Affordable Care Act.
In a draft letter to the Government Accountability Office and the U.S. Inspector General, Hagan urges them to investigate the design, implementation and launch timeline for HealthCare.gov, as well as how contracts were awarded to the 55 companies that worked on the rollout.
She's also asking for an accounting of how much fixing the site will cost and whether the federal government can recoup any of the money it has already paid to vendors who failed to meet performance standards.
"These problems are simply unacceptable, and Americans deserve answers and swift solutions," Hagan wrote. "Taxpayers are owed a full and transparent accounting of how the vendors contracted to build the site failed to launch it successfully."
House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, a California Republican, launched an investigation into the rollout in October, but Hagan spokeswoman Sadie Weiner said that probe is partisan.
"Senator Hagan would like a nonpartisan, independent investigation," she said.
Hagan has long been an outspoken supporter of the president's health care reform plan, and she closes her letter with a statement in support of the Affordable Care Act. Still, the letter appears to be, at least in part, intended to distance herself from the debacle.
Hagan is up for re-election in 2014, and her opponents are already saddling her with the ACA's problems and its resulting unpopularity.
Voters appear to be listening. A poll released Tuesday by Democrat-affiliated Public Policy Polling shows Hagan's early lead over her GOP challengers has evaporated.
Pollster Tom Jensen says Hagan's disapproval is up 10 points since September, closely tracking President Barack Obama's negatives in the state. She's now statistically tied with all four Republican challengers for her seat.