Frustrated by Congress, Trump signs order to weaken Obamacare
WASHINGTON, (Reuters) - President Donald Trump yesterday signed an order to make it easier for Americans to buy bare-bones health insurance plans, using his presidential powers to undermine Obamacare after fellow Republicans in Congress failed to repeal the 2010 law.
Trump issued the executive order aimed at letting small businesses band together across state lines to buy cheaper, less regulated health plans for their employees with fewer benefits. Such new insurance options, however, may not be available until 2019, and the order could face legal challenges from Democratic state attorneys general.
It was Trump’s most concrete step to undo Obamacare since he took office in January promising to dismantle Democratic former President Barack Obama’s signature domestic policy achievement.
Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer accused Trump of “using a wrecking ball to single-handedly rip apart our healthcare system.”
Later on Thursday, Politico reported that Trump plans to cut off subsidy payments to insurers selling Obamacare coverage, citing two people familiar with the matter.
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.
President Trump smiles after signing an Executive Order to make it easier for Americans to buy bare-bone health insurance plans and circumvent Obamacare.