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Red States, Too, Get Health Care Nod From Obama

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

WASHINGTON (AP) — Some bipartisan cooperation may finally be breaking out in the nation’s contentious battle over health care overhaul.

The Obama administration announced Thursday that four red states are on the list of those getting the initial go-ahead to build their own health insurance marketplaces. Open enrollment for millions of uninsured Americans is less than 10 months away — Oct. 1.

The GOP-led states — Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah — joined five others getting conditional approval from Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (seh-BEEL’-yuhs).

Counting previous approvals, 17 states plus Washington, D.C., have been cleared to run their own insurance exchanges.

Washington will set up the new insurance markets in states that don’t want to participate.

But at least nine other states are considering partnerships with the administration.

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