Trump Spitefully Expands His War on the Poor, Hobbling ObamaCare, Literally Physically Harming Millions of Americans
Literally under dark of night late Thursday President Donald Trump's press secretary issued a statement announcing the administration will stop paying ObamaCare cost-sharing subsidies that make health insurance affordable for millions of Americans. Payments this year to insurance companies were expected to total about $9 billion.
Trump has been threatening to end the payments for months. Just the threat alone has skyrocketed premiums in at least 20 states as insurance companies saw escalated risk. The Congressional Budget Office expects an additional 20 - 25 percent increase to premiums across the board for Americans who purchase health insurance via the ObamaCare exchanges.
In an especially smug and typically sinister statement, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders Thursday night claimed "the Government cannot lawfully make the cost-sharing reduction payments."
"The bailout of insurance companies through these unlawful payments is yet another example of how the previous administration abused taxpayer dollars and skirted the law to prop up a broken system," she added, including an almost daily attack on the Obama administration. "Congress needs to repeal and replace the disastrous Obamacare law and provide real relief to the American people."
The President, in fact, delivered a one-two punch Thursday, designed to implode ObamaCare by lighting administrative dynamite at the very foundations of the Affordable Care Act. Earlier that day he signed an executive order allowing insurance companies to sell less expensive plans that offer far less coverage and do not meet the minimum standards mandated by the ACA. Those standards include Outpatient care, prescription drug coverage, emergency care, mental health services, hospitalization, rehabilitative and habilitative services, preventive and wellness services, laboratory services, pediatric care, and maternity and newborn care.
By allowing insurance companies to sell essentially junk policies to people who think they don't need coverage, many are expected to flee the ObamaCare exchanges, skyrocketing premiums as insurance companies scramble to keep those plans profitable. Those with pre-existing conditions will be among the hardest hit.
"After Republicans failed to repeal the health law in Congress, Mr. Trump appears determined to dismantle it on his own," The New York Times noted late Thursday night. "Without the subsidies, insurance markets could quickly unravel. Insurers have said they will need much higher premiums and may pull out of the insurance exchanges created under the Affordable Care Act if the subsidies were cut off."
Calling it "a spiteful act of vast, pointless sabotage leveled at working families and the middle class in every corner of America," Democratic Leaders Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi issued a joint statement, saying President Trump "apparently decided to punish the American people for his inability to improve our health care system."
Democrats weren't the only ones outraged. Republican U.S. Congresswoman from Florida Ileana Ros-Lehtinen:
Cutting health care subsidies will mean more uninsured in my district. @potus promised more access, affordable coverage. This does opposite.— Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (@RosLehtinen) October 13, 2017
Now, millions of Americans are wondering if they will be able to afford quality health insurance once again – and many will find they simply cannot.
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