Late last week more than a dozen Republican governors declared that they will not build the insurance market exchanges called for by the Affordable Care Act, including prominent names like Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, John Kasich of Ohio, Scott Walker of Wisconsin and Rick Perry of Texas.
On Monday, Gov. Mary Fallin of Oklahoma joined them, declaring in a statement that it “does not benefit Oklahoma taxpayers to actively support and fund a new government program that will ultimately be under the control of the federal government.”
The original deadline for states to notify the Department of Health and Human Services on whether they intend to build their own exchange was last Friday, but the administration extended it to Dec. 14. About a dozen Republican governors are weighing their options, including Chris Christie of New Jersey, Rick Scott of Florida and Terry Branstad of Iowa.
The Affordable Care Act encourages each state to build and operate its own exchange — a regulated, subsidized marketplace where consumers and small businesses can shop for insurance plans. If a state declines, the federal government has the power under the health care reform law to build one for it.
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