Rubio: Public is forced to ‘blindly trust’ navigators

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) criticized President Obama Tuesday, saying he is forcing the public to “blindly trust” healthcare navigators despite security risks.

“It is unacceptable that President Obama is forcing the American people to blindly trust the federal government’s website security and its network of navigators to help them comply with ObamaCare,” Rubio wrote in an op-ed for the Miami Herald. “This is a recipe for people falling prey to fraud, identity theft or gross incompetence by those operating as ObamaCare navigators.”

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The administration has urged those shopping for health insurance through the ObamaCare exchanges to call the 1-800 number instead of using the website. HealthCare.gov has been plagued with technical “glitches” since it launched on Oct. 1.

Obama has told consumers to use healthcare “navigators” to help them make an informed decision when enrolling in an insurance plan through the marketplaces, but Republicans have cited concerns that those navigators would have access to personal information and could use that for identity theft and fraud.

“This is a troubling proposition for the American people who are now being forced into other ObamaCare enrollment options that could make them more susceptible to fraud and personal identity theft,” Rubio wrote.

Secretary of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius admitted at a Senate hearing last week, that a convicted felon could be hired as an ObamaCare navigator because there isn’t a universal background check system in place.

Rubio said he has introduced a bill aimed at protecting the public from ObamaCare-related identity theft committed by fraudulent navigators. His bill would raise background check standards for people applying to be navigators.

“While this is not a fool-proof solution to address ObamaCare’s problems, it is one that will provide a greater degree of protection and relief to the people dealing with the ObamaCare’s consequences,” Rubio wrote. “While I believe ObamaCare as a whole should be repealed and replaced, until we can do so, we must protect our people from its flaws.”