Six months into his presidency, Donald Trump has loudly and repeatedly spelled out his astonishing desire to “let Obamacare fail,” never quite seeming to understand the profound impact that would likely have on insurance markets, the exact people who voted for him, and—despite his repeated insistence that Democrats will “own” whatever disaster he openly spurred—the Republican party’s ability to retain control of the House.
Thursday is this month’s deadline to sign off on Affordable Care Act subsidy payments, and in the wake of the Senate’s bloody failure to repeal Obamacare, Politico reports, Trump continues to not quite understand why pulling the payments is a bad idea. Imagine that! And after months of explicitly outlining his desire to personally trigger market collapse, his administration is reportedly considering actually doing it.
Asked whether Trump would actually pull the plug, a different administration official said this time is “different” — and that administration officials had begun looking at how they would end the payments. “But no decision has been made,” the official said.
Immediately halting the subsidies — estimated to be $7 billion this year — would likely tip the already shaky Obamacare markets into chaos. Insurers already are queasy about the uncertainty roiling the marketplaces as the 2018 open enrollment season approaches.
Surely, this will all get resolved at lunch—particularly since Trump has begun framing an Obamacare repeal as a promise “they” have made, and not an outcome he personally campaigned on and has continually promised. “They” are gonna love that!
Enjoy your steak and ketchup, gentlemen.