Rubio calls for delay of Obamacare sign-up deadline
October 22nd, 2013
09:16 AM ET
10 months ago

Rubio calls for delay of Obamacare sign-up deadline

Washington (CNN) - Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Florida, will introduce a bill next week that would push back the March 31 deadline to sign up for Obamacare because of the federal website's technical issues.

"It's not fair to punish people for not buying something that's not available," he said Tuesday on CBS' "This Morning."

Fact Check: Obamacare

If individuals have not signed up for health care insurance by the end of March, they face a penalty with the Internal Revenue Service. Rubio's bill would move the deadline to six months after the Government Accountability Office certifies that HealthCare.gov is fully functional.

"All it's calling for is a limited delay on the individual mandate until the website is fixed. I think that's a very prudent approach," Rubio said. "Quite frankly, I think that's where we're going to have to wind up anyway."

Report: Healthcare website failed test ahead of rollout

Rep. Trey Radel, R-Florida, announced the House version of the bill also on Tuesday.

"The President seems content to exempt everyone but you and your family from his signature piece of legislation. Worse yet, Healthcare.gov and its Spanish counterpart, where you can shop for health insurance, is completely unusable," he said in a news release. "This bill delays the Obamacare fine on you and your family until you can actually sign up for health coverage, a common sense concept lost on an Administration determined to force this law on you at any cost.”

President Barack Obama addressed the website debacle at an event promoting the Affordable Care Act on Monday. He said "there's no sugarcoating" the problems that have persisted since the website launched on October 1, and argued "nobody is more frustrated by that than I am."

Asked on CNN's "Piers Morgan Live" Monday night whether the administration would consider pushing back the deadline to sign up for insurance, White House spokesman Jay Carney didn't rule the option out, but argued they've long expected that most people wouldn't sign up for insurance until later on, anyway.

"We are three weeks into a six month process. So this is still [the] very early days," he said, before citing what they learned from the statewide insurance program in Massachusetts. "In these early stages, people spend a lot of time shopping. Most of the enrollment comes later, as the deadlines near. So we fully expect to have all of our systems operating more efficiently as we approach those deadlines."

HealthCare.gov: What works, what doesn't

Carney added that right now, they're focused on "making the system work."

"The product here is not a website," he said. "The product is affordable health insurance for Americans who haven't had it in the past."

Fmr. Obama innovation expert: HealthCare.gov created by "sloppy" contractors

Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear of Kentucky said people aren't having as tough a time signing up on his state's exchange, arguing that most of the problems are on the federal website.

Beshear also sounded confident everything will work out in the end, but was open to the idea of a possible pushback of the deadline.

"Deadlines tend to move, you know, when things don't work well, we'll move deadlines," he said on CNN's "New Day." "I don't know exactly what decisions will be made because we're not there yet...I feel confident that we will have time to get people in this system."

– CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.


Filed under: Health care • Marco Rubio
soundoff (107 Responses)
  1. Wake up People!

    Why would Rubio care? I thought FL wasn't participating.

    October 22, 2013 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  2. Data Driven

    "We are three weeks into a six month process. So this is still [the] very early days,"

    An important point to remember.

    Still, I would advise the President to shut down the site for a week and have a marathon rewrite session in relayed teams. They need to fix this in a hurry, or Rubio's comment about an inevitable delay will be the result.

    October 22, 2013 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  3. MaryM

    Not gonna happen Rubio and TPers. Give it up TPers. Gallup poll has republicans at a 74% DISAPPROVAL RATING. TPers, The majority of Americans are sick and tired of your crap.

    October 22, 2013 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
  4. Winston Smith

    Wow! They just never give up. When all else fails, bring out the token immigrant with the bad complexion, and do your best to befuddle the masses. Typing the words can not and never will express the total amount of, or degree of distrust many people have of the republican party. It's impossible to express this. The words just are not there, or are so reprehensible that they are not fit to think about.

    October 22, 2013 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  5. Gurgyl

    This guy is a total idiot, I do not know how Florida entertains. Pathetic. CNN, sow democracy, publish all comments from ordinary citizens.

    October 22, 2013 09:29 am at 9:29 am |
  6. Marie MD

    The Cuban anchor water boy doesn't realize that his own state said no to helping millions of Floridians?
    Not fair for people to Buh something that is not available? It must be the Florida gunshine state sun.
    Some people have gotten through either online or by phone and signed up.
    You are thinking of all the contraceptives you want to deny women.
    BTW – not that it worked except for his right fringe crazies, but rafael bin laden is NOT popular. Just as you won't be. Go home and be quiet.

    October 22, 2013 09:30 am at 9:30 am |
  7. Tampa Tim

    Rubio owes his political career to the Kochs, so this is to be expected. Texas has the most uninsured 18 and over at 28.8%, then LA at 24%, with FL coming in fourth place at 22.8%. Three weeks into a six month sign up, and the boy blunder wants a year delay?

    October 22, 2013 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  8. Tampa Tim

    I wonder if anchor baby Rubio knows that some of Florida's 4.5 million uninsured may be Hispanic. Tough to win I-4 corridor representing the Koch Brothers. One and done for Rubio.

    October 22, 2013 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  9. Name jk. Sfl. GOP CRUZ conservatives,the garbage of America.

    I have confidence the web sit will be fixed or replaced and the deadline will be rolled back a little bit until it's fully operational , after all, we are dealing with the dems and not the teaparty do nothing GOP party of STUPID!!!!!!

    October 22, 2013 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  10. Tampa Tim

    Nine of the ten states with the most uninsured people 18 and over have republican governors. California is the only one with a democrat, but is taking corrective measures with Obamacare.

    October 22, 2013 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  11. Tampa Tim

    Florida will not be participating in the ACA until 2014, when we vote for Rick Scott to be unemployed.

    October 22, 2013 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  12. Rudy NYC

    "In these early stages, people spend a lot of time shopping. Most of the enrollment comes later, as the deadlines near. So we fully expect to have all of our systems operating more efficiently as we approach those deadlines."
    ----------------------
    Think again, Mr. Carney. Most companies conduct their annual health care re-enrollment for the coming year in November. You're about to be slammed, and you don't seem to realize it.

    October 22, 2013 09:51 am at 9:51 am |
  13. Doug in NYC

    Wow, you do know the "Penalty" clause in the ACA has no teeth right? While the IRS is responsible for collecting the fine, they are also bared from levying Civil, Criminal and liens against peoples property who chose not to participate right?

    Look it up, it's on page 131 of the law. So the individual mandate has no deadline, nor does it have any penalties as you don't have to pay them and the IRS can't do a thing about it! Why isn't anyone reporting on this?

    October 22, 2013 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  14. Lynda/Minnesota

    One thing we can ALWAYS credit Marco Rubio with: picking up and running with GOPerville talking points.

    October 22, 2013 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  15. Tampa Tim

    Thanks Doug. Rubio should have read the law. He seems to be unaware that there is no penalty.

    October 22, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  16. AL TAYLOR

    If all the people that are going to the website that have no interest in purchasing health care would leave the site there wouldn't be a problem. I believe that there is a Republican plot to jam the website.

    October 22, 2013 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  17. jinx9to88

    Get back to immigration bill Rubio!!

    October 22, 2013 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  18. Tampa Tim

    Rubio must watch Hannity, because he is lying just like Sean.

    October 22, 2013 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  19. Rick McDaniel

    That's going no where.

    The GOP has to face the reality...........until the public gets sick of paying more than its worth, and demands that ObamaCare be changed.........nothing is going to change. Our country has become a nation of hand out mentality, and welfare. The rich are expected to pay for the poor to sit and home and do nothing.......because that's what they prefer to do.

    October 22, 2013 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  20. the hippies were right

    Isn't that cute, hims wants to be like brother Teddy.

    October 22, 2013 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  21. sonny chapman

    DELAY is a Repub. euphemism for KILL.

    October 22, 2013 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  22. Wake up People!

    Speaking of Hannity......I was channel surfing last night and he was doing a spot called ' Obamacares victims'. People that watch Fox are grossly misinformed.

    October 22, 2013 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  23. Anonymous

    @Al Taylor:
    -–
    You may on to something. I wouldn't put anything past them.

    October 22, 2013 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  24. Name jk. Sfl. GOP CRUZ conservatives,the garbage of America.

    RUBIO, anybody hooked up with the GOP teaparty garbage of America will be kicked out in their next election and that means you Rubio , Scott , the lines govenor and the new teaparty loser radel and the whole Florida legislature that is depriving our citizens of health insurgence , see you at the polls next year and you will be unemployed soon after GOP garbage of America and Canada, that's you Cruz.

    October 22, 2013 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  25. The Real Tom Paine

    –"If this isn't evidence enough that Cruz isn't too concerned with the "voices in Washington," when asked whether he was hoping to repair his relationships with Republican leaders, Cruz laughed. "I don't work for the party bosses in Washington. I work for 26 million Texans."
    ******************
    Wrong. Your job title is " United States Senator", meaning you work for over 300 million of us. Now, I know its hard for Ted to wrap his blinkered little mind around this fact, but he also works for people from NY, CA, IL, FL, and they do get the opportunity to give him a job review in the next midterm election, While we can't fire him, we can certainly take out our resentment and anger on every one of his colleagues OUTSIDE of Texas and flush the diseased waste of space and money called the Tea Party out: too bad the GOP will think its getting an enema with lava, but if that's what it takes to remove the toxic waste built up in our body politic, lets do it.

    October 22, 2013 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
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