WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork) — There is new pressure on the White House over a key aspect of the Affordable Care Act.
Former President Bill Clinton gave an interview, where he added to the criticism of the botched rollout of the website to sign up for the health care law known as Obamacare.
“The big lesson is that we’re better off with this law than without it,” President Clinton said.
But then Clinton launched into a criticism of the most controversial aspect of the health care law — that if you like your plan, you can keep it.
As CBS 2’s Dick Brennan reported, that has proven untrue for millions.
“I personally believe even if it takes a change in the law, the president should honor the commitment the federal government made to those people and let them keep what they got,” said the former president.
The White House actually embraced the comments, saying President Obama said something similar last week.
“The president has tasked his team with looking at a range of options, as he said, to make sure that nobody is put in a position where their plans have been canceled and they can’t afford a better plan even though they’d like to have a better plan,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said Tuesday.
So far, it remains unclear what the fix will be. The Republican-controlled House will vote on its plan later this week.
Some Senate Democrats have also expressed their frustration over the issues with the rollout.
“We need to look at the political reality, we need to be open to constructive changes to make this law work better. But there are those, frankly, who don’t want it to work at all,” Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said.
In the meantime, Obamacare enrollment numbers are leaking out. One report says only 50,000 people enrolled in the national exchange, far below the anticipated enrollment of 500,000.
The administration expects to release formal numbers later this week.
“The enrollment numbers…which will be the first month of enrollment, are likely to be quite low given the struggles that people have had getting access to the site and getting information,” Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said.
The vote on the House bill is expected by Friday.
Some say that will be a deadline for the administration to get a new plan going because some House Democrats may agree to vote for the Republican plan.
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