Insurance commissioner out after criticizing Obamacare fix

Posted at 7:06 AM, Nov 18, 2013

By Jim Acosta

CNN Senior White House Correspondent

(CNN) — Washington D.C.’s insurance commissioner was forced out of his position after he criticized President Obama’s executive action addressing weaknesses in the nation’s troubled health care law, a source familiar with the matter said.

William P. White was one of several insurance commissioners across the nation to reject the President’s move to allow insurance companies to continue selling policies to consumers who wanted to keep them. He released a statement hours after the president’s fix was announced. After his comments, White was quickly replaced by an acting commissioner Sunday, a District of Columbia spokesman said.

“The action today undercuts the purpose of the exchanges, including the District’s DC Health Link, by creating exceptions that make it more difficult for them to operate,” White’s statement said, as reported by The Washington Post and other news outlets Saturday.

But White was not replaced because of the statement dismissing the President’s policy, but because of “how he went about it,” a district official familiar with the situation told CNN.

That official said White failed to notify his immediate supervisor, the district’s deputy mayor, of his decision to release a statement criticizing the Obama administration’s action.

The district has not yet made a final decision on whether to adopt the new White House guidelines permitting the sale of insurance policies that no longer meet Affordable Care Act requirements.

But a district official said the district may well follow the lead of Washington state and others that have rejected the administration’s Obamacare fix.

“The D.C. exchange is doing well,” the official said on the condition of anonymity. “We probably aren’t going to side with the White House.”

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