Obama says rebranding Obamacare hard given rocky politics

WASHINGTON Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:56pm EST

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the Wall Street Journal CEO council annual meeting in Washington, November 19, 2013. REUTERS/Jason Reed

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks at the Wall Street Journal CEO council annual meeting in Washington, November 19, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Jason Reed

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama blamed Republicans on Tuesday for contributing to the troubled rollout of his signature healthcare insurance plan and said it will be hard to "rebrand" Obamacare after his administration fixes a website used to sign up for the program.

"We should have anticipated that that would create a rockier rollout," Obama told a Wall Street Journal conference.

"One of the problems we've had is one side of Capitol Hill is invested in failure," Obama said.

Obama said he thinks the website will be fixed on time for people to "catch up" and shop for insurance by key deadlines, which fall in December and March.

A key concern for the program's success is attracting enough young and healthy people - who often go without health insurance - to balance out the costs of providing insurance to older and sicker people, Obama said.

"We're going to have obviously remarket and rebrand, and that will be challenging in this political environment," Obama said.

Obama's comments came on a day when two committees of the U.S. House of Representatives held hearings focused on warnings about the website that the administration received in March and on data security concerns.

"If the president doesn't realize this disastrous rollout is solely the result of his administration's own failings, then he may never get this implementation figured out," said Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Republican Speaker John Boehner.

(Reporting by Roberta Rampton, Steve Holland, Jeff Mason; Editing by Sandra Maler and Cynthia Osterman)

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Comments (7)
4825 wrote:
“One of the problems we’ve had is one side of Capitol Hill is invested in failure,” Obama said.
This guy still is completely clueless. His side crammed a law through the House of Representatives, rammed it through the Senate and he signed off on it without one single Republican vote and then he lied over and over to the American people. After all that he expects everyone to fall in love with it and be on board. As Granddaddy used to say, “you reap what you sow”. Mr. President, repeal the Obamacare law, the majority of Americans did not want it to begin with.

Nov 19, 2013 5:00pm EST  --  Report as abuse
TheNewWorld wrote:
Blaming the Republicans again for something you own 100%. Here is a clue Obama, the House of Representatives didn’t roll out the website. The GOP didn’t write the ACA. All of this belongs to you. Quit being a child and put your big boy undies on and take some responsibility for your own failures for a change.

Nov 19, 2013 5:36pm EST  --  Report as abuse
edged wrote:
The only way Republicans can be blamed for this is to point out that they should have stood stronger and continued the government shutdown till Obama and the Democrats gave individuals the same year long delay that Obama gave businesses.

This was your roll out democrats, the republicans tried to give you an extra year.

Nov 19, 2013 8:25pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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