Morning Action: ACA Requirements Delayed 2 Years by Obama Administration

OBAMACARE.  The Obama administration announced Wednesday that consumers may remain for another two years in their insurance plans even if they do not meet Obamacare’s benefit requirements (sub. req’d):

The Obama administration announced Wednesday that consumers may remain for another two years in insurance plans that don’t meet the health care law’s benefit requirements, yet another in a series of delays or adjustments of large swaths of the president’s signature legislative achievement.

That move will give state regulators and insurers the option of renewing plans until policy years that start no later than Oct. 1, 2016 – which would be well after this year’s mid-term elections and into the heat of the next presidential campaign. The new postponement could push the continuation of that non-compliant coverage into 2017.

Administration officials also told reporters on a conference call that they do not anticipate any other big changes throughout the rest of the open enrollment period. A White House official who was asked whether the March 31 deadline would stick said that “no major changes are anticipated at this point.”

UKRAINE.  The House will take up a bill today to help Ukraine’s economy through loan guarantees (sub. req’d):

House members today will take up legislation to help Ukraine’s economy in its confrontation with Russia by making it eligible for U.S. loan guarantees. It’s the first, but not likely the last, action Congress is expected to take in the dispute, with a separate sanctions bill likely to reach the House floor next week. 

The United States State Department also imposed new sanctions in response to the Ukraine crisis:

The United States State Department imposed a ban Thursday on visas for officials and individuals who have taken steps to undermine the territorial integrity of Ukraine, the Obama administration announced.

The measure is particularly significant because the ban will apply to Russian as well as Ukrainian citizens who are “responsible for or complicit in threatening the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.”

2014.  Concerns over Obamacare will drain support for Democratic in 2014 according to a new poll:

Two-fifths of all respondents, or 40%, indicate they are somewhat or much less likely to support a candidate that supported or voted for Obamacare than those (32.5%) indicating they would be somewhat or much more likely to support a candidate who supported or voted for the Act.


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