While the Obama administration scrambles to fix the tech problems hammering the sign-up for the health-care law, the White House is working on revised guidance on when most uninsured Americans will be required to purchase coverage.
To adhere to the so-called individual mandate, people have until Dec. 15 to apply for coverage that's effective Jan. 1. Even though open enrollment lasts until March 31, individuals would face a tax penalty if they postpone buying insurance beyond mid-February.
But under the proposed change, individuals will only be expected to have started enrollment by March 31.
"The people who most need the coverage will wait however long they have to wait to get through the lines and get the product," Ario said. "And people who don't need it as much today, who are very important to have inside this law, will be a bit more impatient." He was referring to the young people needed to make Obamacare work, because they'll presumably pay into the system but use the coverage less frequently.
Top White House officials met Wednesday with leading insurance CEOs to talk about ways to solve the tech issues with Healthcare.gov, which the federal government runs for 36 states not operating their own exchanges.
(Read more: White House admits key flaw in Obamacare website)
The problems have plagued the federal Healthcare.gov site, but some state sites have been running more smoothly.
"If every state is doing what Kentucky is doing today, we'd be well on the way to the 7 million enrollees already. They've enrolled proportionally more than they need to move toward that number," Ario said.
"The states are succeeding. We certainly don't want to stop them from going ahead right on time. And once that's true, the federal government, I think, has the obligation to make sure the law goes forward for everybody else as well. "
"So I think it'll go forward on time. It's just a question whether we'll have full online functionality," he said, but noted that people can also buy coverage in more traditional ways.
"There are multiple ways to get through the checkout line here. You can do it on paper still. You can call somebody on the phone and work through it on a phone call. You can go to an insurance companies still. You can go to Web brokers."
—By CNBC's Matthew J. Belvedere. Follow him on Twitter