WASHINGTON – Republican governors, many of whom have refused to implement the new healthcare law for the last 2 1/2 years, are now asking President Obama for more time to decide how to handle a key part of the law.
In a letter to the president Wednesday, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, the current and incoming chairmen of the Republican Governors Assn., said governors do not have enough information to assess whether they should operate their own insurance exchanges in 2014 or leave the job to the federal government.
These exchanges are designed to allow Americans who don’t get coverage through work to buy insurance on Internet-based marketplaces much as they shop for airline tickets. The exchanges were to be operated by states by next fall so consumers could get insurance starting in January 2014.
But just 15 states, including California, Maryland and Connecticut, as well as the District of Columbia, have established an exchange, according to the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation.