It will go down to the wire but the latest numbers indicate Obamacare may sign-up 7 million people by the March deadline originally pushed by the Obama administration. Of course, they've already decided to move the finish line closer.
The most recent numbers are promising: senior administration officials tell the Huffington Post that over 4 million people have enrolled in an Obamacare program. Since the end of January, 700,000 people signed up for the service. Speaking to Obama for America volunteers Tuesday evening, President Obama confirmed the latest numbers. “We now have more than 4 million Americans who have signed up for quality, affordably health insurance," he said.
That puts the 7 million goal originally championed by the administration within spitting distance with five weeks to go before the end of March deadline. That would only happen in a perfect scenario, though. In truth, health care officials will more than likely fall short of 7 million enrolments, which is why Kathleen Sebelius tried to adjust the finish line to a more realistic "five to six" million Tuesday on Huff Post Live. "First of all, 7 million was not the administration,” Sebelius said. “That was a CBO, Congressional Budget Office prediction when the bill was first signed. I’m not quite sure where they even got their number. Their number’s all over the board, and you know, the vice president has looked and said it may be closer to 5 to 6.” That's much closer to reality.
It's not unfathomable that Obamacare could see enough sign-ups over the next five weeks, with a healthy push at the deadline similar to the surge in December, to put enrolments over the 7 million threshold. But somewhere in the low 5 million range is much more likely, and Republicans will likely attack that number because that's not what the administration promised initially. April should be exciting.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.