WH sees 'surge' in young O-Care enrollees

The White House on Monday dismissed concerns by retiring Rep. Jim MoranJames (Jim) Patrick MoranLawmakers toast Greta Van Susteren's new show Star-studded cast to perform play based on Mueller report DC theatre to host 11-hour reading of the Mueller report MORE (D-Va.), who in a radio interview on Monday said he didn't think enough young, healthy consumers would purchase ObamaCare policies.


Moran told WAMU that millennials "are less likely to sign up" for health insurance on the federal exchanges.

"I think they feel more independent, I think they feel a little more invulnerable than prior generations," Moran says. "But I don't think we're going to get enough young people signing up to make this bill work as it was intended to financially."

Healthcare experts have warned of a so-called "death spiral" if too few young, healthy adults buy into the ObamaCare marketplace to offset the costs of insuring older and sick Americans.

White House press secretary Jay Carney said he hadn't seen the interview, but said that despite the "shaky rollout" of the ObamaCare website, the government was seeing "a significant surge in the percentage of young Americans under 35 enrolling."

"Those numbers are consistent with what we saw in Massachusetts," Carney said. "And if you ask the Republicans in Massachusetts who supported and, in one case signed, into law the health insurance reform, which is the closest thing to a model for the president's Affordable Care Act, they would say that that worked and that there -- the percentage of young people who enrolled was adequate."

Earlier this month, the Department of Health and Human Services said that 30 percent of ObamaCare enrollees were aged 34 and under, and announced last week that 3 million individuals had purchased coverage. The administration originally projected that 7 million consumers would enroll, with 39 percent aged 18-34.

The White House also dismissed an imminent proposal from Sens. Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrGOP senators balk at lengthy impeachment trial Graham: Senate trial 'must expose the whistleblower' GOP chairman says Senate impeachment trial could last 6-8 weeks MORE (R-N.C.), Tom CoburnThomas (Tom) Allen CoburnThe Hill's Morning Report — Presented by PhRMA — Worries grow about political violence as midterms approach President Trump’s war on federal waste American patients face too many hurdles in regard to health-care access MORE (R-Okla.) and Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchTrump awards Medal of Freedom to racing industry icon Roger Penske Trump holds more Medal of Freedom ceremonies than predecessors but awards fewer medals Trump to award Medal of Freedom to former Attorney General Edwin Meese MORE (R-Utah) to repeal and replace ObamaCare. 

"What I have seen in press reports suggests that that this looks very much like just another repeal proposal, another attempt to raise taxes on the middle class, to keep uninsured Americans with pre-existing conditions locked out of the market, to raise costs on seniors and to take away Medicaid from the millions of Americans who stand to gain coverage thanks to the expansion that was part of the Affordable Care Act," Carney said.