They claim she was thoroughly vetted. Oops. Now when will Obama be indicted for fraud?
State health care exchange officials said they had thoroughly vetted Christa Ann McClure, the Connect for Health Colorado director they placed on paid administrative leave Tuesday after learning she had been indicted for stealing from her last employer.
McClure, 51, pleaded not guilty Feb. 6 in federal District Court in Montana to eight counts of theft and fraud from a nonprofit housing agency in Billings.
She was indicted Jan. 16 and notified her current Denver employer, the state-sponsored health exchange, on Monday, a few days after the story broke in Montana media, Connect for Health spokesman Ben Davis said in a telephone interview.
Connect for Health performed a criminal background check and checked references before hiring McClure in March, Davis said.
“She was completely clean,” he said. Her position as executive director of Housing Montana of Billings, he said, made her well-qualified for her post as Connect for Health’s director of partner engagement — she was liaison with state and federal partners, such as Medicaid officials. The job pays $130,000 a year.
“Integrity and public trust are paramount to the mission of Connect for Health Colorado,” Davis said in a statement released Wednesday. “We take extensive measures to protect consumer information and technology systems.”
Sure they do.
The allegations are now part of a scandal-riddled narrative for federal and state health insurance exchanges — under the microscope of political opponents looking for missteps, local political and communications consultants said.
“This simply contributes to the fact that the overall implementation of health-insurance reform has been troubled by an endless series of embarrassments,” said political analyst Floyd Ciruli. “This can’t help.”
Eric Anderson, of communications consulting firm SE2, said public reaction to allegations against McClure probably would be magnified because of the politically charged atmosphere surrounding the new health care law.
Yeah, how dare anyone play politics with the biggest political issue of our time.