Just hours after signing an executive order that implicitly begins unwinding ObamaCare, Politco reports, citing two people familiar with the matter, that President Trump plans to cut off critical subsidy payments to insurers selling Obamacare coverage.
Earlier today, Trump signed an executive order expanding access to more loosely regulated insurance options with low premiums, a move that could undermine the ACA insurance markets.
“We’ve been hearing about the disaster of Obamacare for so long,” Trump said in signing the order at a White House ceremony. “For a long time, I’ve been hearing repeal, replace, repeal, replace.”
He then said that the order is "starting that process" to repeal ObamaCare.
It will be the "first steps to providing millions of Americans with ObamaCare relief."
And now, as Politico reports, the process appears to accelerating as Trump's decision to end the payments, estimated at $7 billion this year, marks the president's most aggressive move yet to dismantle Obamacare after months of failed GOP repeal efforts on Capitol Hill.
As Reuters notes, Trump has repeatedly threatened to stop the payments, which are made directly to insurance companies to help cover out-of-pocket medical expenses for low-income Americans enrolled in individual healthcare plans under Obamacare.
The move is likely to draw lawsuits and may put pressure on Congress to appropriate funding for the subsidies.
This latest move is likely to throw healthcare markets into chaos, and will infuriate Democrats – effectively closing the 'Chuck and Nancy' channel of communications – leaving a deal to avert government shutdown on or after Dec 8th (when the currenct extension deal runs out) increasingly doubtful.