President Donald Trump has instructed the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to discontinue payment for ObamaCare subsidies immediately. The move will deal a major blow to ObamaCare, pressure lawmakers to fix the broken law and almost assuredly draw a legal challenge.
“The Democrats ObamaCare is imploding. Massive subsidy payments to their pet insurance companies has stopped. Dems should call me to fix!” he said in a pre-dawn tweet on Friday.
ObamaCare is a broken mess. Piece by piece we will now begin the process of giving America the great HealthCare it deserves!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 13, 2017
“ObamaCare is a broken mess,” President Trump added. “Piece by piece we will now begin the process of giving America the great HealthCare it deserves!”
White House domestic policy director Andrew Bremberg told reporters during a conference call Thursday that the Trump Administration intends to take “additional actions” on health care over the next few months.
“We will discontinue these payments immediately,” Acting HHS Secretary Eric Hargan and Medicare Administrator Seema Verma said in a joint statement.
In another joint statement, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said that the President’s actions will increase premiums, which are already skyrocketing under ObamaCare.
“If these reports are true,” the Democrats said in the joint statement, referring to the president’s plans, “the president is walking away from the good-faith, bipartisan Alexander-Murray negotiations and risking the health care of millions of Americans.”
President Trump signed an executive order on Thursday expanding healthcare associations to millions and allowing those plans to be purchased across state lines.
The President was joined by Senator Rand Paul, R-Kty., who spoke about the order before Vice President Mike Pence introduced the main event. The libertarian-leaning Senator Paul and the President had been working on this order for months.
“This is what real free market replacement looks like.”
The Presidential Executive Order Promoting Healthcare Choice and Competition Across the United States is aimed at the roughly 28 million Americans who aren’t purchasing healthcare on the ObamaCare exchanges. It aims to arrest the decline in options and affordability to small businesses and their employees as a result of the destabilization of the insurance markets.
The White House hopes to implement within 6 months, which directs Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta to expand access to Association Health Plans and come up with ways to allow purchasing across state lines. Health Associations, which essentially give millions the same group insurance that big corporations offer, may grow to be larger than the largest of corporations.
While “association health plans” could be shielded from some state and federal insurance requirements, the White House said participating employers would not be allowed to exclude workers from the plan, or charge more to those in poor health or with preexisting conditions.