Obama administration extends state based health exchange deadline

MISSOURI (KFVS) - Should Missouri set up a health care exchange?

The original deadline to do so was Friday, November 16, 2012, but Thursday the Obama Administration extended that deadline to December 14th.

Missouri voters passed Proposition E when they cast their ballots last week; that means Governor Nixon can't create a state based health insurance plan without approval from voters or the legislature.

With this extended deadline, there is a little more time, but it's quickly approaching, and the Missouri General Assembly is scheduled to meet January 9, 2013.

When the deadline was still scheduled for Friday November 16, Governor Nixon said the answer for Missouri seemed to be clear.

"The only option for Missouri at this time is to indicate that we will be unable to proceed with the state based exchange," said Nixon.

If states don't create a health insurance exchange by the deadline, the federal government said it will.

Nixon said a state based plan is a better option.

"A federally facilitated exchange is not the ideal approach, regulating the insurance market is a power best left in the hands of the states where we can perform those duties more efficiently and effectively, and provide better service for our consumers," said Nixon.

Missouri Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder said federal government officials are bluffing that they will create a plan for states that don't create one for themselves.

"I am prepared to call that bluff, I do not believe they will set up an exchange, if they do, I don't believe it will be effective because I will make you a prediction on your air, over the next one to three years the whole rotten edifice of Obamacare is going to come crashing down, in on itself, it's collapsing," said Kinder.

He said the government doesn't have the funds to enforce these plans.

"We also have a republican, a conservative majority in the us House of Representatives, budgets originate there, they can pull the plug on the funding for this," said Kinder.

Kinder is urging lawmakers to not create a health insurance exchange in Missouri. He said voters have shown twice they don't want the state based plan by passing the Healthcare Freedom Act in 2010 and Proposition E last week.

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