POLITICS: PennAve

Obama to host insurers at White House

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President Obama will meet with insurance executives at the White House on Friday, an attempt to assuage industry concerns over an administration plan that would allow insurers to renew canceled health plans that don't meet Obamacare standards.

A White House official said Obama and the insurers would "discuss ways to work together to help people enroll through the marketplace and efforts to minimize disruption for consumers as they transition to new coverage.”

On Thursday, the president unveiled a fix that would let insurance companies reinstate through 2014 plans canceled for millions of Americans under the new health law. The providers, however, are not required to honor the administration's request.

Insurance leaders roundly criticized the administration's fix, saying it would be difficult to implement and could cause premiums to rise as companies work to implement the most sweeping overhaul to the health care system since Medicare.

The White House put forward its plan as Democrats pursue a legislative solution for the millions of canceled policies. Red-state Democrats on Thursday expressed doubts that the Obama framework did enough to address the problem.

Obama apologized for his broken promise that all Americans could keep their insurance plans under Obamacare, and in a White House press conference Thursday, admitted the administration “fumbled” the rollout of his signature domestic achievement.

The president, though, insists that healthcare.gov, the problem-ridden website registering consumers in the new insurance marketplaces, will run smoothly for the majority of visitors by the end of the month.

The GOP-led House on Friday will vote on a bill sponsored by Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., which would allow Americans to keep their insurance coverage, even if it doesn’t meet Obamacare standards. However, the administration late Thursday announced that it would veto such legislation if passed by Congress.

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