WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin joined a group of five Democratic senators and one independent who are proposing a list repairs to the Affordable Care Act.

“We have to fix it, repair it. We’ve got to have insurance and we’ve got to have people healthier, but they have to be responsible (changes) too,” Manchin said on Thursday’s “The Real Story with Gretchen Carlson” on Fox News.

“We can’t force products into the market where the market is not going to accept them.”

Those making the proposals with Manchin (D-W.Va.) are senators Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), Mary Landrieu (D-La.), Mark Begich (D-Alaska), Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Angus King (I-Maine).

“We’ve had some moderate, reasonable people who have sat down and we think we have an a lot of our Republican colleagues that will join us on this and these responsible changes,” said Manchin.

The proposals include:

— A bill to restore startup funds for new consumer-driven health insurance cooperatives, like those already operating in 23 states.

— Allowing state insurance regulators to develop models for selling health insurance across state lines.

— Providing a new lower-cost, high-deductible option called the Copper Plan to add to the existing Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze plans in the federal exchanges. The Copper Plan would still meet the ACA’s coverage requirements.

— Extending the Small Business Health Care Tax Credits and expand those credits to include businesses with fewer than 50 employees. The current cap is 25 employees.

— Expanding the option for voluntary coverage to employers with fewer than 100 employees.

— Streamlining and simplifying reporting requirements for healthcare coverage.

— A bill that would let family members working for the same business, on the same employer health plan, count as one full-time equivalent employee.

— Permanently allowing people to enroll for healthcare coverage through insurers or other certified web-based entities and not just healthcare.gov.

— Opening access to agents and brokers to assist with enrollment in healthcare plans on the ACA exchanges.

It was not immediately clear if U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) would bring any or all of the proposals to the Senate floor. White House support for such changes is also questionable.

“I would hope they would look at the reasonable changes we’re trying to make that fits the American public,” said Manchin. “People do want health care, but they want affordable health care. They’d like to keep what they have.  They’d like to be able to stay healthy, like to be able to have incentives and rewards.”

As of Thursday afternoon, federal officials said six million people had enrolled for healthcare coverage through the exchanges.

Monday is the deadline for enrollment, an ACA mandate, through www.healthcare.gov. Those who begin the enrollment process by March 31 will have additional time to complete that process because of a recently announced extension.

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  • winston

    pass it to find out what is in it ? what, I like Joe but he is on the wrong side. Joe did not shoot health care law he shot cap and trade that would have been worse for Wv than Obama care.

  • Jack Marcum

    When eating in restaurants in the state of Florida you will now see on your receipt a TAX for ACA. Affordable Care Act or OBAMACARE. Look out WV, you will soon be seeing the same on your guest check.

  • Jack Marcum

    Manchin has joined up with all left wing liberal to create more of OBAMACARE. Manchin has never cast a vote to repeL or delay. Now, he supports the Surgeon General who opposes guns.... Wake up West Virginians and don't be blinded by this left wing Senator...

  • Patchy

    Other initiatives include:

    -New deck furniture for the SS Titanic
    -A grayer shade of paint for Mountaineer Field
    -Increased police presence in Summersville WV
    -A branch of the Westboro Baptist Church in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district

  • Hammer

    The only change that will truly lead to "fixing" the abomination is requiring EVERY member of the Senate and Congress to sign up for the same program they so enthusiastically endorse for the rest of us. How about some Leadership by Example, politicians? Now there's a novel thought.

  • Eric

    Hey Joe...Trying to save your butt again, eh?? TOO late!!

  • WV4ever

    I see all this bad mouthing of Obamacare....who has read the law in its entirety? What specifically is wrong with the law? I want exact reasons from the law not from any other source. I bet that NO ONE has read the LAW, nor has it affected anyone on here running their mouth, and NOT ONE of you know specifically what is wrong with the law. PROVE ME WRONG!

    • Aaron

      "What specifically is wrong with the law?"

      The first issue is the cost. 6 million Americans have now signed up for health care under the affordable care act. The most individuals who making up to 300% of the federal poverty level who enroll in the Affordable Care Act can be charged for premiums is 9.9% of their income. Beyond that, the federal government provides subsidies to cover the premium.

      6 million Americans have enrolled in the Affordable Care Act. For every $100.00 the government subsidizes premiums, $600 million dollars is added to the federal budget.

      It is not inconceivable that if 30 million Americans sign up for care, the cost to cover premiums alone will easily exceed $1 trillion annually.

      How are we going to pay for that?

    • DeeDee

      Do you mean besides forcing you to buy something because you chose to LIVE? Besides forcing NUNS to buy birth control? Besides forcing a family business to provide pills that cause abortions, against their beliefs? The product that keeps kids dependent on parents for EIGHT years past their 18th birthday? Insurance companies were forced to drop policies for long-time customers or add expensive coverage that the customer didn't want or couldn't afford. The law has been changed nearly 40 times - without going back to Congress. That should be enough to get it tabled until it can be fully reviewed.

      • wv4ever

        What has happened to you? or your personal experience in this evil law? Get off the conservative news blasts, give me your story on the issue. No one is being forced to provide pills! That is the kind of misleading stuff I am talking about! Not true on the insurance policies, from personal experience, mine went down and got a better policy...you are proving my point. So you are sure no one that works like at a place called Hobby Lobby takes birth control pills? Do you really believe that Nuns are going to be force feed birth control pills? Geeza

  • Brian

    The only fix is repeal completely. What's the next government mandated service? Must every citizen subscribe to e-meals since they are too stupid to make their own healthy food choices. Perhaps a mandatory gym membership? Let the cards fall where they will Washington. Those who are a drain on society need to be personally responsible or else go the way of the dodo.

  • Tim C

    I gotta fix for ya......GET RID OF IT! I saw on the news where they're signing up illegals at the Mexican consulates. Where's the bill to FIX THAT CRAP? How about you news media types try getting to the bottom of these scams being perpetuated on the American people?

  • George

    Be aware------still these Dems side with OBama--remember they voted for it in the first place-----just running scared because they know how this nation has deteriorated under this administration-------enough said

  • joey

    hey joe repeal or defund it, or get ready to pay the price.

  • Shadow

    Joe has a hard time keeping his foot out of his mouth. Unfortunately for him, his true colors come out. None of the other Demos supported it, only those up for reelection.

    • billyed

      Joe, What about the public option?
      Make these insurance giants play fair.

  • Vinnypin FL

    Sorry Manchin, Landreaux from La and all the other leftists who voted for this...you're gonna have to answer for those "yes" votes...
    Hard for me to believe a scam this big being perpetrated on the American public...what a complete and total disaster this is...we told you so...

    • Vinnypin FL

      really tho I blame Justice Roberts as much as the "perfect storm" makeup of Congress in place at that time...the ACA is as unconstitutional as the day is long...how anyone would vote "D" for anything above dog catcher after this monstrosity is beyond me...

      • Aaron

        If a bill provides for all citizens equally and does not reward one group over another, how does that not meet the general Welfare Clause of the Constitution?

        I'm not so sure this bill fits perfectly in that criteria but unlike welfare or social security, it does actually meet the guidelines of the general Welfare clause.

        I don't suppose you could detail on what grounds it is unconstitutional, could you?

        • vinnypin FL


        • vinnypin FL

          see dissent of Scalia, Kennedy, Alito, Thomas in ruling for this information...

          • Aaron

            I read the dissent and while I agree with their opinion, that is not what I ask.

            To be simple, I'll ask you this. Do you envision a system in which health care is constitutional?

  • Independent View

    Do some research and you will find that House Republicans have passed 44 changes to Obamacare, but Harry Reid would not let any of the 44 be voted on in the Senate.
    Whoa! isn't this the same Joe Manchin that supported Obamacare when it passed Congress. We did not hear these calls for changes then. Oh, now I get it, it's election time.

    • Aaron

      What changes have Republicans passed in the House only to have shot down in the Senate? I researched the topic and I found nothing beyond repeal measures. Perhaps you can direct me in the right direction and I'll find these changes proposed by Republicans.

  • Matt

    6 millions signed up. 6 million people without insurance that will now live healthier lives. Many more millions to come. A generation from now, people will be screaming, 'don't touch my social security, my Medicare, or my OBAMACARE!'

    • whatamoroon

      You are dreaming. If the high premiums and the even higher deductibles don't turn people against O'Bama care, then the fact that they have to drive 50 to 100 miles to find a participating hospital will.

      • wv4ever

        If you had cancer and the doctor was 100 miles away, would you drive there for treatment? Have you ever had a HMO or PPO type policy? Have you ever had to choose between getting medical treatment and paying your electric bill? Do you how much insurance policy premiums were going up per year prior to Obamacare? Did you know that deductibles have been increasing every year even before Obamacare? Lastly, do you personally know anything about insurance? You have had your head in the sand for years if you did not know these things were happening way before Obama!

        • Aaron

          "Do you how much insurance policy premiums were going up per year prior to Obamacare?"

          Premiums are still going up. The standard silver policy that cost the average taxpayer less than 100 dollars per month is still increasing. We're you to purchase that policy on your own in WV that plan would likely cost you $600.00 or more per month.

          The difference is that now Joe Taxpayer is subsidizing the premium.

          So how are we going to pay for subsidy? Thus far, 6 million Americans have signed up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act. For every hundred dollars per month Taxpayers are required to subsidize the premium $600,000,000.00 is being added to our debt, per month.

          Nothing is free.

    • Shadow

      How many of those 6 million have paid their bill? The answer is: No One knows! Most businesses require payment before the product is delivered. With the high deductible, how many Drs are going to give service until they have some assurance their bill will be paid. The solution to this problem will be difficult for many. Obamacare must be revoked or this Country's healthcare system will go into the pot.

    • Aaron

      Unless of course we're broke as a nation.

    • ViennaGuy

      Signing up and actually having insurance coverage are two completely different things. The news media is littered with stories of people who signed up and thought they had coverage, but found out that when they did go to the hospital, they had no coverage.

    • The typical liberal spin

      As a physician, I will tell you, it's a disaster. You are counting a LARGE percentage in your data that LOST insurance that they already had because of this debacle, and had to re-enroll. The Kool Aid is poison. Spit it out.

      • wv4ever

        This is not true Doctor. The policies were replaced with better policies, not lost. Each insurance company had to upgrade and give people the total benefit of their premiums. You need to change your tv channel from Fox News to Dora the Explorer in your waiting room so you can understand what is going on in the real world. Doctors like you are why we need national health care.

      • Matt

        Spoken like a true medical professional who wants to hold onto every outrageously charged dollar for medical care.

        • Oh you got me

          Spoken like your typical bottom-feeding liberal. When faced with facts, they revert to personal attacks.

          • Matt

            Sorry. Seems like I hit a nerve.