Biden: 'We may not get to 7 million'

Vice President Biden on Wednesday said it is possible the healthcare exchanges would fall short of an initial estimate of 7 million enrollments by the end of March. 

Biden, during a stop at a coffee shop in Minneapolis, said it would be “a hell of a start” if 5 million to 6 million people signed up by the deadline.  

"We may not get to 7 million, but if we get to 5 or 6 million that's a hell of a start," Biden said. 

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In a brief conversation with four women who either signed up for healthcare through the exchanges or acted as navigators for others, Biden said he had been a significant consumer of healthcare during his lifetime, citing a serious car accident and a brain aneurism. 

"All I kept thinking about was, 'Thank God I had all this insurance,' " he said. 

The Congressional Budget Office initially predicted 7 million people would likely sign up for healthcare through the newly created exchanges by the deadline on March 31. The administration touted that number as a benchmark as well. 

But after the botched rollout of the federal website, the main portal to buy health insurance on the exchange, the administration moved away from that number. 

A CBO report released earlier this month predicted the shaky rollout of the exchanges would result in 1 million fewer people signing up for coverage through the end of March. It revised its estimate from 7 million to 6 million. 

Questions have also focused on the makeup of the enrollment figures, which would ideally include a mix of young and old people. 

So far, 3.3 million people have selected a healthcare plan under ObamaCare, according to the latest Health and Human Services numbers from January. More than one million people signed up in January alone.  

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