Rep. Henry Waxman: 'I'm Sorry' About 'Difficult' Obamacare Transition

Image: Rep. Henry Waxman: 'I'm Sorry' About 'Difficult' Obamacare Transition

Wednesday, 23 Oct 2013 08:13 PM

By Greg Richter

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As Democrats, especially those up for re-election in 2014, begin to call for changes in the Affordable Care Act amid its disastrous rollout, one supporter in Congress offers an apology.

"I know it's difficult for a lot of people. And I'm sorry about that," Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., told CNN's Erin Burnett on Wednesday.

Waxman was not apologetic that the young and healthy are having to pay more, explaining that they were getting those low rates only because people with pre-existing conditions were being priced out of the market.

Still, he acknowledged that people are being hit with sticker shock. People should have been allowed a transition period in which they could have kept their plans until they expired, he said.

"They should have provided for a transition," Waxman said. "Some of this is hitting people quite abruptly."

Former Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean said the federal exchanges in the 36 states that didn't set up their own should have been set up differently.

Appearing on CNN's "Crossfire," Dean suggested dividing the states up into four or five groups, with different companies running each. That, he said, would have kept the entire system from shutting down at once.

"Did they screw up? Yes," he said.




Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., suggested in an open letter to President Barack Obama that the open enrollment period be extended, and Rep. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., is sponsoring a bill to delay the individual mandate for one year. 



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