by Katherine Restrepo
Director of Health Care Policy, John Locke Foundation
Deadline (n) – the latest time or date by which something should be completed
In the world of Obamacare, there are no deadlines. Last night, the Obama administration announced that the deadline to purchase subsidized health insurance plans on healthcare.gov, the federal exchange website, will be extended to mid-April. The original deadline was March 31.
Supposedly the extension will only be granted to individuals who have difficulty signing up for coverage before March 31, due to healthcare.gov’s slew of technological problems.
Today’s Washington Post says:
Under the new rules, people will be able to qualify for an extension by checking a blue box on HealthCare.gov to indicate that they tried to enroll before the deadline. This method will rely on an honor system; the government will not try to determine whether the person is telling the truth.
The extra time will not be restricted, though, to people who wait until the last minute to try to sign up. Although no one will be asked why they need an extension, the idea is to help people whose applications have been held up because of the Web site’s technical problems, or who haven’t been able to get the system to calculate subsidies to help them pay for coverage.
This unilateral extension, along with the rest of the Obama administration’s extralegal maneuvers, only makes for a sounder case that Obamacare continues to weaken.