In a news environment where day three analysis stories often get filed 30 minutes after an important news event occurs, it's somewhat astounding that we find ourselves on week three of talking about a sucky government website.
And, because developments on this story have been ... somewhat static, it's strangely impressive how the lack of news has inspired the opposite reaction in the press, with accusations and predictions growing more apocalyptic and acquiring additional strains of dramatic and dramatically misplaced metaphors.
The slow, messy rollout of the Affordable Care Act's biggest ticket items is D.C.'s latest shiny thing. You can expect new stories about the state of health care—and the state of Healthcare.gov's website—from now until at least the first few weeks of the new year, when enrollees start to get insurance.
Some of the stories have useful information, like this chart-packed one by Sarah Kliff, which she puts together every day.
Few things excite a political reporter more than polls. They're the sports statistics of the electoral grind, giving any argument that little extra oomph. For people not necessarily known for their numerical prowess, a cleverly placed percentage point is the perfect condiment for any story. Heck, polls can even be the story.
Unfortunately, our enthusiasm for those alluring little numbers can end badly. In election off-season it's not so noticeable, with polls slowing to a relative trickle and our attentions focused elsewhere—or so far in the future that the ambitious dreams of Chris Christie and Hillary Clinton dancing in our heads outweigh any margins of error. But the polls are still there. Exhibit A: presidential approval ratings.