Trump Administration, Facing Pressure, Agrees to Keep Making Crucial Affordable Care Act Payments

by David Lauter via latimes.com

The Trump administration, faced with increasing pressure from Republican members of Congress, agreed Wednesday to continue giving insurance companies payments that are widely viewed as critical to keeping markets stable under the Affordable Care Act.

Trump and his top aides have flirted for months with cutting off the money, known as cost-sharing reduction payments. Doing so would be one step toward causing the healthcare law to “implode” — as Trump has sometimes put it. Republican members of Congress, however, have worried that any move to cut off the payments would cause chaos in insurance markets. Trump has said voters would blame Democrats for any problems with the markets, but few Republican elected officials share that view.

The pressure to continue the payments increased Tuesday when the Congressional Budget Office reported that cutting off the payments would actually increase federal spending because ending them would cause insurance premiums to rise sharply, and thereby increase the cost of other government subsidies. A White House official confirmed Wednesday that the administration had decided to make this month’s payment, which will total around $600 million. The question of whether to make future payments remains under review.

To read full article, go to: Trump administration agrees to continue healthcare subsidy for now – LA Times

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