Speed Reads

ObamaCare

ObamaCare numbers boosted by auto-enrollment — despite Obama administration warnings

While the 6.4 million federal ObamaCare enrollees clocked as of last week mark a significant increase from last December, about 70 percent of those customers are re-enrolling though the federal exchange — and more than 60 percent of those 4.5 million people were auto-enrolled in plans they had purchased last year. Critics of the health care program have noted that these customers will likely experience higher-than-average rate hikes — and the Obama administration actually agrees.

Earlier this month, the White House strongly encouraged ObamaCare customers to shop around instead of simply auto-enrolling, saying that 70 percent of current customers could pay a lower premium if they switched plans. Since hardly anyone seems to have listened to this plea, which is understandable given the exchange website's notorious history of bugs and delays, many auto-enrollees are expected to change or cancel their plans by the mid-February close of open enrollment.