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INDIANAPOLIS — Republican Mike Pence said Tuesday that Indiana should not act to set up a state-operated health care exchange under the federal Affordable Care Act.
Pence's comments come after Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels a letter to Pence, Democrat John Gregg, and Libertarian Rupert Boneham asking for their opinions regarding whether the state should operate its own exchange, which is a system meant to foster an affordable environment for individuals to buy coverage.
If the state does not take on the exchange, federal officials will step in to create one.
"There is too much uncertainty surrounding the Affordable Care Act for Indiana to even consider implementing our own exchange," Pence said in a statement. "The national debate is far from over and the regulatory, fiscal and legal implications have the potential to cost Hoosier taxpayers and employers millions."
Pence is a native of Columbus.
Daniels has estimated that creating an exchange could cost Indiana at least $50 million annually.
Daniels was seeking input from the candidates because while initial decisions about the exchange must be made yet this year, the program wouldn't be implemented until the next governor takes office.
Daniels must tell federal authorities whether the state will create an exchange, leave the job to the federal government or create a hybrid partnership by Nov. 16, just weeks before Daniels will turn the governor’s office over to a successor.
Pence and Boneham met with Daniels’ staff last week to talk about the issue.
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