The pressure is on for the federal government and states running their own health insurance exchanges to get the systems up and running after overloaded websites and jammed phone lines frustrated consumers for a second day as they tried to sign up for coverage using the new marketplaces.
In some ways, the delays that persisted Wednesday were good news for President Barack Obama and supporters of his signature domestic policy achievement because the holdups showed what appeared to be exceptionally high interest in the overhauled insurance system. But if the glitches aren’t fixed quickly, they could dampen enthusiasm for the law at the same time Republicans are using it as a rallying cry to keep most of the federal government closed.
“It was worse today than it was yesterday,” said Denise Rathman of Des Moines said, after trying for a second day to log onto the Iowa site.
Rathman has insurance through Dec. 31 but said she is eager to sign up for a policy because of her psoriatic arthritis, which has caused her to be denied insurance in the past.