WASHINGTON — Under intense bipartisan pressure to answer mounting consumer complaints about the botched health care rollout, White House officials are struggling to make good on President Obama’s promise that Americans can keep their insurance coverage without undermining the new health law or adding unaffordable costs.
(Reuters) – Initial enrollment estimates for President Barack Obama’s healthcare reform program show participation is falling far short of expectations, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal, raising pressure on the White House to get its rollout back on track.
Fewer than 50,000 Americans were able to sign up for new Obamacare health insurance plans in October through the error-plagued HealthCare.gov website, below the federal government’s target, the newspaper reported on Monday, citing two people familiar with the matter. The data is from 36 states.
When the Obamacare website debuted on Oct. 1, Barack Obama walked into the Rose Garden and compared it to Amazon.com, Kayak.com and the iPhone. Unlike those operated by the other three, the Affordable Care Act portals to buy insurance were not working that day — but the President explained that the “glitches” had to do with traffic that “exceeds anything that we had expected.” Five days later, when asked about the continued problems, he told the Associated Press, “It is true that what’s happened is the website got overwhelmed by the volume.”