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Carney says 'huge appetite' for Obamacare vs. 'the buy-word for incompetence'

Carney claims 'huge appetite' for Obamacare
Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images

White House press secretary Jay Carney spoke on Tuesday. Jan. 14, 2014, of the figures which indicate so-called millennials are failing to purchase Obamacare at the rate the Obama administration originally considered critical. According to the Department of Health and Human Services data, a coveted age group needed for the Obamacare exchanges, healthy young adults between the ages of 18 and 34, appear to be turning up their noses. Thus far, out of a total enrollment of near 2.2 million, their enrollment accounts for only 24 percent.

Although the White House had once projected more than 38 percent of the total of Obamacare enrollment would be from the youngest age group, Carney side-stepped the direct implications of what their low enrollment might ultimately mean for the success of Obamacare, maintaining, "There is a huge appetite for this product."

Republicans disagree and have countered the final Obamacare product, as rolled out in October, isn't appetizing to younger adults. Zinging Obamacare as the "buy-word for incompetence," staunch conservative, George Will, believes, "Obamacare always has counted on the mass irrationality of young people." However, Will feels they may "go on strike" over the economy and particularly "what they see as people who can't run a web site."

The Obama administration apparently remains confident that before the March deadline comes and goes, there will be a last-minute flood of enrollment from young folks. Carney insisted that according to results in the Massachusetts' health care model young people are laggards who, "are going to be, by and large, late to the party when it comes to signing up."

According to a Wall Street Journal report, insurance "executives are worried." Allan Einboden, chief executive of Scott & White Health Plan expressed concern the data was "more negative than we thought it was going to be." He pointed out requests for pre-authorized surgeries for enrollees in the first days of their coverage was a major cost concern.

Insurance companies need enough healthy enrollees for balance or President Obama's most significant achievement is at risk.