Trump Threatened To End Healthcare Subsidies For Lower Income Patients In An Effort To Force Negotiations On Healthcare Plan
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday April 12 2017, Trump threatened to end certain subsidies and healthcare cost sharing mechanisms for lower income patients in an effort to continue negotiations on healthcare reform.
These subsidies amount to approximately $7 billion annually and cover approximately 7 million people.
This issue is not new, as the Republican controlled congress under President Obama sued to halt these subsidy payments:
Many Republicans believe Mr. Obama lacked the authority to green-light billions of dollars of funding for the payments, which they say Congress never specifically appropriated. The GOP-controlled House of Representatives instigated a lawsuit against Mr. Obama’s administration over the question under former House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio.
A federal judge in 2016 ruled the government payments were improper but let them continue while Mr. Obama’s administration pursued an appeal. After Mr. Trump’s election, Republicans requested and received an initial delay in the case.
“House Speaker, Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) has said he would prefer to see the administration continue to fund the payments.”
In addition, if these payments were stopped it “could trigger an insurance meltdown that causes the collapse of the 2010 health law, forcing lawmakers to return to a bruising debate over its future.”