MEMO: Affordable Care Act Open Enrollment


FROM: DNC CEO Jess O’Connell

TO: Interested Parties

DATE: November 1st, 2017

RE: Affordable Care Act Open Enrollment

Today is the first day of the Affordable Care Act open enrollment period. With President Trump’s relentless attempts to make this process more difficult, it is important that every American knows how to enroll and has the opportunity to get covered.

President Trump has repeatedly tried to sabotage open enrollment by cutting the enrollment period in half, slashing funding used for advertising and outreach programs, and abandoning state partnerships that help people enroll in health care. On top of all this, Trump has misinformed the public by lying about Obamacare.

Obamacare. Is. Not. Failing. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office expects 11 million people to enroll in Obamacare next year, and the law is more popular than ever!  A record 54% of voters have a favorable opinion of Obamacare and 62% want to see the law maintained.

With the start of open enrollment today, Americans can sign up for healthcare and show Trump that he needs to end his sabotage campaign. 

How To Enroll:

The majority of states are on the federal exchange and use, which means individuals must sign up between now and December 15th for coverage starting on January 1, 2018.

12 states have their own exchanges and websites to sign up. While the open enrollment period starts for every state today, some have different deadlines. See below for more info:



State Based Marketplace

Deadline for 2018 Coverage


Covered California

January 31, 2018


Connect for Health Colorado

January 12, 2018


Access Health CT

December 22, 2017

District of Columbia

DC Health Link

January 31, 2018


Your Health Idaho

December 15, 2017


Maryland Health Connection

December 15, 2017


Health Connector

January 23, 2018



January 14, 2018

New York

NY State of Health

January 31, 2018

Rhode Island

Health Source RI

December 31, 2017


Vermont Health Connect

December 15, 2017


Washington Health Plan Finder

January 15, 2018

*Enrollment information provided by Get America Covered


Trump’s Open Enrollment Sabotage:

The Trump administration cut the 2018 open enrollment period in half and planned scheduled shutdowns of the federal health insurance exchange website.

McClatchy: “The new marketplace rules, which a majority of consumers criticized in public comments, take effect in 2018. They would cut the marketplace enrollment period in half, from three months to 45 days — Nov. 1, 2017, through Dec. 15, 2017 — for coverage beginning Jan. 1, 2018.”

The Hill: “HHS officials announced last week that the website will be shut down for maintenance for 12 hours from midnight to noon almost every Sunday of the next Obamacare enrollment period, which lasts from Nov. 1 to Dec. 15, as well as overnight on the first day of the enrollment period.”

The Trump administration slashed millions of dollars from outreach programs and advertising aimed at enrolling people in Obamacare plans.

Wall Street Journal: “President Donald Trump’s administration is cutting nearly $116 million from outreach programs aimed at signing people up for the Affordable Care Act, a move that has cheered the health law’s opponents but inflamed Democrats who fear the administration is undermining it.”

Wall Street Journal: “The Department of Health and Human Services plans to spend $10 million during the coming open-enrollment period on advertising, including emails, texts, radio ads and digital promotions, officials said Thursday. That is a 90% drop from about $100 million spent by former President Barack Obama’s administration during the last open-enrollment season.”

Wall Street Journal: “The administration is also cutting grants to organizations that help consumers understand their coverage and financial-aid options under the law. HHS will give $36.8 million in grants in 2017 to such groups, known as ‘navigators,’ a drop of about 40% from the $62.5 million awarded in the previous enrollment period.”

The Trump administration limited and even abandoned state and community partnerships that have played a key role in enrolling harder-to-reach demographics.

Politico: “The Trump administration has also pulled back on community partnerships that played a key role in reaching important but harder-to-attract demographics like minorities, younger enrollees and rural residents. And in some states, the budget cuts forced in-person assistance groups to close up shop.”

Bloomberg Editorial: “Annoyed by Congress's failure to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the Trump administration is redoubling its efforts to undermine the law. The latest act of sabotage: Top federal health officials have been told not to help states sign up Americans for insurance policies as part of this fall's open enrollment period.”

Trump’s HHS spent taxpayer resources to produce anti-ACA videos and scrubbed its website of useful consumer guidance on the ACA.

New York Times: “The department removed useful guidance for consumers about the Affordable Care Act from its website. Under the Obama administration, the health department’s website contained information to help consumers learn about the Affordable Care Act and how to obtain coverage through the health insurance marketplaces. Much of that information is now gone. Some was removed within hours of President Trump’s inauguration. A link to a page about the Affordable Care Act disappeared from the health department’s home page the evening of the inauguration, according to a comparison of the sites, shown below.”

As Trump has falsely asserted that Obamacare was collapsing or dead, many ACA consumers lack important information about the law’s enrollment period.

Bloomberg: “About 60 percent of current marketplace customers didn’t know when enrollment is to begin, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll released Oct. 18. Among the uninsured, 85 percent were in the dark.”

Politico: “And the noise created by Republicans’ repeated failed attempts to dismantle the federal health care law has sowed vast confusion about the status of the marketplaces, as several polls have shown.”