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'Obamacare' sign-ups about 45 percent ahead of last year's pace

| Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017, 11:00 a.m.
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) is surrounded by reporters as he leaves the weekly Senate Republican policy luncheon in the U.S. Capitol November 14, 2017 in Washington, D.C.  Senate Republicans are considering including a repeal of the Obamacare individual mandate as part of their proposed tax cut and reform legislation, which they want to pass the week after the Thanksgiving holiday.
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Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) is surrounded by reporters as he leaves the weekly Senate Republican policy luncheon in the U.S. Capitol November 14, 2017 in Washington, D.C. Senate Republicans are considering including a repeal of the Obamacare individual mandate as part of their proposed tax cut and reform legislation, which they want to pass the week after the Thanksgiving holiday.

WASHINGTON — Government data released Wednesday show sign-ups for Affordable Care Act health plans are running more than 45 percent ahead of last year's pace.

The numbers from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services come as Republican senators are pushing to pay for tax cuts by repealing the “Obamacare's” requirement to carry coverage. That would result in 13 million more uninsured.

The new figures show that nearly 1.5 million consumers picked a plan through Nov. 11, compared to just over 1 million from Nov. 1-12 last year. The share of new customers for 2018 coverage stayed at about 23 percent.

The data cover 39 states served by the HealthCare.gov website.

The Obama-era law offers subsidized private insurance for people who don't get coverage on the job.

Sign-up season ends Dec. 15.

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