Washington (CNN) – President Obama was wrong when he promised, "If you like your health insurance, you can keep it."
There are multiple proposals on Capitol Hill aiming to fix this broken promise of Obamacare. But even if Congress can come together to pass a bill that would help the president keep his pledge, there's little indication it would have any immediate effect on those cancelled insurance plans.
One proposal introduced by Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-Louisiana, would require insurance companies to continue offering plans so long as customers stayed up to date with their payments.
Another put forward by Rep. Fred Upton, R-Michigan, would give health insurance companies the option to continue offering plans currently available on the individual market, while also allowing customers to continue to enroll in those plans. Republicans in the House of Representatives plan to hold a vote on Rep. Upton's proposal on Friday.
Robert Zirkelbach, a spokesman for the trade association America's Health Insurance Plans, says both of these proposals leave many questions unanswered.
"Health insurance is regulated at a state level," Zirkelbach said. Any federal mandate to offer certain insurance plans - or even a law allowing companies to continue plans - may contradict decisions by state regulators.
Reconciling these contradictions would complicate any proposal to address these problems, Zirkelbach said. And requiring companies to continue to offer certain plans, as Sen. Landrieu's proposal would do, would be "incredibly disruptive."
"Health plans can't arbitrarily decide what coverage they want to offer in a marketplace," he said. "Health insurance is regulated at a state level. States' rules determine what health insurance companies can offer."
The state-level approval process can take several months, and health care industry advisor Robert Laszewski told NPR on Tuesday that it's too late for insurers to change their offerings.
"It's not at all feasible," Laszweski told NPR, because companies have spent much of the past year preparing for the new regulations under the Affordable Care Act, and all of the plans that kick in on January 1 have undergone a thorough rate review process with state regulators where they're available.
"Even if you decide to go 'never mind' about all these cancellations, how is the insurance company going to send out letters to all these people within the space of a couple of weeks, rejigger all of their computer systems that took months to redo in the first place, and get these people to decide whether they want to try for Obamacare, which is the only place they can get subsidies, or try to stay on their own policies?" Laszewski asked.