The Obama administration's announcement Thursday that it has given Utah a conditional okay to run its own state health insurance marketplace came as a surprise to many exchange watchers. Utah Gov. Gary Herbert, a Republican, had resisted making major changes to the state's existing market, which was built before passage of the health care law and is geared to small business. Acknowledging that Utah's exchange was "atypical," Herbert suggested it serve as "the minimum standard for all federally compliant exchanges." The feds announced that Utah was one of seven states to gain conditional approval.