Obamacare Sign Up Deadline Delayed for the Holidays

In order to get young people to buy the Obamcare Exchange health insurance plans, the Obama Administration dictated to insurance companies a new deadline of December 24, Christmas Eve, for policies to be effective January 1. At the same time, over the weekend the President went through a botched PR rollout of his own, enrolling in the DC Exchange. These games will continue, and probably become worse, once the law is in full effect next week.

The Obama Administration and other Obamacare backers have been trying for a long time to get young people to sign up for exchange-based insurance. The latest social media push urged supporters to talk to relatives at holiday gatherings.

Never mind, for a second, how uncomfortable that would be — having cousin Chad show up as the Instant Expert on Obamacare to lay down the White House talking points. Consider when people actually get together for the holidays: it’s usually only Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Sure there are extended visits, but the mother lode of extended family interaction is on those two days. 

The White House finally figured out that after all of the hype pushing people to talk to their families, they’d be past their already extended deadline by the time most people gathered to enjoy each other’s company. Awkward! It would be far better to extend that deadline into the prime holiday time.

At the last minute, they even went to the trouble of enrolling President Obama in the DC exchange, even though as Commander-in-Chief he and his family have a health care staff at beck and call.  

The President didn’t sign up himself, mind you. His staff did it for him.

“Like some Americans, the complicated nature of the president’s case required an in-person sign-up,” the official said. “As you’d expect, the president’s personal information is not readily available in the variety of government databases HealthCare.gov uses to verify identities.”

The only way the President’s staff would know that his enrollment wouldn’t work is if someone tried it. 

The President or his staff must have attempted to sign the President up for the Obamacare exchange and found that they couldn’t do it. Just as for many other Americans who face the mandate tax, the President couldn’t sign up on healthcare.gov, either. 

But it’s good to be king; you can sign up in person. Normal people who sign up “in person” are simply walked through the web site or paper signup. Where did this particular “in-person sign-up” take place? It can’t be in just some random Navigator’s office, since even they just use the web site. Ace guesses White House staff went to Health and Human Services IT offices and had them do it:

And they mean that he didn’t use the website, though that’s supposedly “fixed” and he’s telling everyone else to use it. “Signed up in person” means he utilized top HHS IT officials, entering data directly into the system, to execute this symbolic gesture.

And why is the President’s information not available to healthcare.gov? Surely the security at that site is sufficient to prevent disclosure, isn’t it?

Actually, it’s not. 

So while the President waits past the deadline to enroll, extends the deadline again and again, and finally cuts through the bureaucracy in a way ordinary people could not, to sign up for insurance he isn’t even going to use, insurance companies have got to be wondering what life will be like once they rely on Obamacare for their income.  I’d be worried if I were in their position. 

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