Obama administration pressing insurance companies not to release exchange signup numbers

There has already been plenty of news regarding Obama administration pressure on companies.  Previously they were pressuring companies not to talk about the data errors in the system.  Now comes word of more pressure on companies not to release the number of people signing up for the program.  From INFORUM:
The Obama administration asked North Dakota’s largest health insurer not to publicize how many people have signed up for health insurance through a new online exchange, a company official says. 
During a Monday forum in Fargo for people interested in signing up for coverage via the exchange, James Nichol of Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota told the crowd his company received the request from the federal government earlier Monday. Nichol is a consumer sales manager for the company. 
Still, a spokeswoman from Blue Cross Blue Shield says about 14 North Dakotans have signed up for coverage since the federal exchange went live Oct. 1. That brings total statewide enrollment to 20 – less than one a day. . . . 
An official from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, one of the main the federal agencies handling the federal marketplace, would not directly address questions about the request made of Blue Cross Blue Shield, including whether other insurers were also asked to keep quiet about enrollment. . . .

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