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Cuomo says Washington gridlock won't affect Obamacare in NY

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said threats in Congress to defund Obamacare won’t have any effect on the federal Affordable Health Care Act going forward in New York.

Cuomo said even if Congress is gridlocked over funding for the federal health care act, New York will still be going ahead on Oct. 1 with the required health care exchanges.

 “The health exchange is up and running,” Cuomo said on a trip to Niagara Falls. “I don’t believe there’s going to be any effect on the state.”

States were directed to set up the exchanges so that uninsured people could choose more affordable insurance plans. They are mandated to buy the plans or face a fine.

House Republicans say they won’t vote to extend any government spending unless the bills are stripped of any funding for the health care act, increasing the chances of a government shut down. But Cuomo said he doubts it will come to that.

“I understand the political play that they’re trying to make, but I don’t believe they’re going to be successful,” Cuomo said.

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 public radio stations in New York State. She has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990.