The Obama administration had signaled they were open to the possibility of a delay in requiring individuals to buy health insurance — especially considering all the issues with the HealthCare.gov website — but they are denying reports of a delay of up to six weeks.
NBC News reported their intent to delay the March 31 deadline requiring individuals to buy health insurance for up to six weeks, but the White House forcefully pushed back on that claim soon after.
"NBC is wrong again," tweeted Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest. "Individual mandate timing hasnt changed. Deadline for having insurance is March 31. Was true this am. Is true tonight."
Political reporter Chuck Todd attempted to clarify in a series or follow-up tweets:
The change WH trying to make in health care law is to change enrollment deadline so that Feb 15 isn't deadline to avoid penalty by March 31— Chuck Todd (@chucktodd) October 23, 2013
As it stands now, to make the March 31 deadline, one was going to have to enroll by mid-Feb, that's the change WH/HHS trying to make— Chuck Todd (@chucktodd) October 23, 2013
The disastrous rollout of the website where consumers can shop for health insurance has led some in the President's party to push for a delay.
"If an individual is unable to purchase health insurance due to technical problems with enrollment," Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) said in a letter to the White House, "they should not be penalized because of lack of coverage."
The possibility of a six-week delay comes after a report earlier today that Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin (W.Va.) was drafting a bill that would delay the individual mandate for a year.
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