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ACA sign-ups reach 8 million

4/18/2014, 2:19 p.m.

More than 8 million Americans enrolled for private health insurance in the healthcare marketplace, President Barack Obama announced Thursday.

The president said in a news conference televised live on ABC that the Affordable Care Act is covering more people than predicted a few weeks ago.

“Thirty-five percent of those enrolled are under 35,” he said.

The White House said that 28 percent of the enrolles are between 18 and 34 years old.

Statewide, more than 150,000 Georgians registered even though Gov. Nathan Deal opted out of the program.

The first enrollment period ended March 31.

“We see signs that the Affordable Care Act is bringing more economic security to more Americans,” Obama said. “It is slowing the growth of health care costs and it has brought transparency and competition to the Health Insurance Marketplace.”

The president said that premiums are 15 percent lower than before.

Obama called out Republicans for continuing to support repeal of the law.

“This thing is working,” he said. “The repeal debate should be over.”

The number announced Thursday includes the registrations of individuals who were “in line” to sign up but their applications were not fully processed by the March 31 deadline. The next open enrollment period for 2015 coverage is Nov. 15, 2014 to Feb. 15, 2015.