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Topics: Obamacare

Democratic governor says 'chill out' over health care rollout debacle

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Politics,Congress,Susan Ferrechio,Obamacare,NBC,Kentucky,Ohio,Health Care,PennAve

Kentucky's Democratic governor says Americans need to "chill out" and "take a deep breath" over the disastrous rollout of the new health care law.

Gov. Steve Beshear said fixing the health care program "is going to take some time," but he believes it will eventually work.

"These plans and Medicaid are directed toward prevention and wellness, and that is the future of health care, and I think everybody knows it," Beshear said Sunday on NBC's "Meet The Press."

Beshear appeared on the show with Republican Ohio Gov. John Kasich to talk about the glitches that have plagued the implementation of Obamacare insurance exchanges that opened for business on Oct. 1. Few have been able to navigate the website and sign up, and many who have done so have discovered higher premiums and deductibles and limited choices.

Unlike Beshear, Kasich called the program a "disaster."

"The problem is Obamacare, it doesn't control cost," Kasich said on NBC's "Meet the Press." "Secondly, it's going to drive up the cost for the vast majority of Ohioans. It threatens the ability of small business to grow beyond 50 employees."

Kasich said the troubled health care law rollout, combined with the recent government shutdown and the news that the United States has been tapping the phone of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other world leaders "is a creating an issue of confidence in the minds of the American people and doubt with people around the world, which is really serious."

Beshear said the health care law will eventually succeed.

A third of those who will sign up for the new health care law in Kentucky, including those enrolling in Medicaid, are under 35 years old, a key demographic needed to help the new system function, he said.

"And that's what's going to happen all over this country," Beshear added. "People are going to sign up for this. It'll take us a while to get it in process, but I guarantee you, we're going to make it work because it's good for the American people, and it's good for Kentucky."

Kasich has agreed to expand the Medicaid program under the health care law but opposes the rest of the law and plans to use a public-private plan to reduce health care costs in his state.

"Ohio gets a good deal" by accepting the federal Medicaid money, Kasich said. "We get $14 billion of Ohio money back to Ohio to deal with some of the most serious problems. And, you know, I'm not going to ignore the mentally ill, and I'm not going to ignore the drug addicted or very working poor people on my watch.

"But that doesn't mean I embrace Obamacare," he said, "because I think [health care] is not right."

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