President Barack Obama has directed his aides to pursue “administrative solutions” that would halt the cancellations of individual insurance policies that are resulting from his healthcare law.
“The president did acknowledge that there are some gaps in the law that need to be repaired,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters traveling with Obama yesterday to an event in Louisiana, a day after the president said he’s “sorry” some people are getting cancellation letters from insurers.
White House staff members met at the Capitol on Friday with representatives of top House Democrats to present ideas for changes that wouldn’t require legislation, according to a leadership aide, who asked not to be identified because the meeting was private.
Obama and his allies are acting to head off legislative action to alter the Affordable Care Act, the president’s signature domestic achievement. The Republican-controlled House is poised to vote next week on a measure that would allow healthcare plans currently available to continue into next year without penalty. Two Democratic senators, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana and Joe Manchin of West Virginia, also have made proposals to address signup delays and canceled policies.
Last month’s faulty rollout of the federal website designed to enable Americans to shop for coverage and revelations that hundreds of thousands of people received cancellation notices from insurers have driven down Obama’s approval ratings and given ammunition to Republicans opposed to the law.