Christmas Eve? What a Perfect Time for a Vaguely Worded Obamacare Deadline Delay!



Here's how the Obama administration celebrated Christmas Eve: by issuing a vague, kinda-sorta extension of Obamacare's deadline to enroll in private coverage that kicks in on January 1. Via The New York Times

The Obama administration said Tuesday that it would provide more time for people to complete their applications for health insurance if they could show that they missed the deadline because of problems with the federal health care website.

And how, exactly, will that work? The New York Times reports that…that is a good question: 

It was not clear on Tuesday how many people would be affected, or how consumers would prove that website errors had prevented them from signing up by the deadline on Tuesday night.

The announcement itself was vague, saying only that if website problems had prevented any consumers from enrolling, they might qualify for what the government has called "a special enrollment period." The administration did not say how long that would last. Nor did it define what website errors might be involved.

So, that's helpful.

Remember that this is not the first time the administration has delayed the deadline to sign up for coverage that begins on the first day of 2014. The original date was December 15, which was extended to December 23, which was then extended, semi-unofficially, to December 24. 

At this point, it's all got to be pretty confusing for folks who aren't, say, spending Monday morning of Christmas week scanning for the latest in unannounced changes to Obamacare's sign-up deadlines, or staying up late on Christmas Eve to find out what new, cloudy exceptions the administration has in store for the next few days. 

NEXT: 13 Reasons Marijuana Just Had The Best Year Ever

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Yesterday, the CA exchange announced their enrollment went to Fri (for now), and they were going on an 'honor' system; if you said you tried, that was going to be good enough.
    So is the IRS going to go on the 'honor' system (hey, I thought I sent that in!)? The insurance company ('gee, didn't I send you a payment?)?

  2. heckuva job Radio.

  3. By the time these extensions are over, the Obama administration will be hailed by the media - and low information voters - for delaying the implementation for one year (the same delay that the GOP was so heavily criticized for suggesting). And the Stupid Party will let them get away with it.

  4. Oh, I put this in AM links earlier, but it's applicable here:
    AP drops all pretense, goes full excuse mode:

    "Health care law's rocky start is nothing new"
    Yeah, it's a problem but he means well and really bad gov't screwups in the past didn't start well either!
    I presume Carney is pulling down two salaries now?

  5. And let's pile on:
    "New ObamaCare fees coming in 2014"
    "The cost of President Obama's massive health-care law will hit Americans in 2014 as new taxes pile up on their insurance premiums and on their income-tax bills.
    Most insurers aren't advertising the ObamaCare taxes that are added on to premiums, opting instead to discretely pass them on to customers while quietly lobbying lawmakers for a break."
    If I had anything to do with the stupid party, I'd be hollering that from the highest building I could find.

  6. Remember kids, Obamacare is the Law of the Land.
    Which Obama can change on a whim.
    Doublethink really is a thing.

  7. Most insurers aren't advertising the ObamaCare taxes that are added on to premiums,

    Showing the genius of crony capitalism, with the reacharound to the insurers being the "risk corridor" bailout funds they will be dipping into shortly.

  8. Part of the reason for this is the administration's panic about the low enrollment numbers.

    But another part is its ongoing effort to shift the blame for the entire Obamacare disaster to the insurance companies.

    If the insurer's can't pivot on a dime to comply with every changing pronouncement by the administration, then it all becomes their fault. The only responsibility of the administration you see is to say stuff. If someone else doesn't make it happen, then it's their fault.

    And of course the insurers priced their product based on the Obamacare coverage mandates and the viability of the insurance purchase mandate. When Obama utters his magic words to let some people keep their old policy, if the insurance companies are unwilling to take the financial hit of letting them do so, then it's all their fault - not the administration's fault.

  9. And news from a working website state - NM - and not many people are all that interested. 291 enrolled.

    That's called WINNING!


Please to post comments

Comments are closed.