Piece by piece, Trump tries to un­ravel Oba­macare

Pres­i­dent acts on his own af­ter fail­ures in Congress

The Arizona Republic - - USA Today - Heidi M. Przy­byla and Jayne O’Donnell

“I just keep hear­ing ‘re­peal and re­place, re­peal and re­place.’ Well, we’re start­ing that process.” Pres­i­dent Trump

WASH­ING­TON When it comes to health care, Pres­i­dent Trump says he’s do­ing “the right thing” for Amer­i­cans. He’s will­ing to work with Democrats on a bi­par­ti­san plan, he says, af­ter three failed at­tempts by the Repub­li­can-con­trolled Congress to re­peal and re­place the Af­ford­able Care Act.

At the same time, he’s us­ing the power of the pres­i­den­tial pen to un­ravel the ACA piece by piece — which could af­fect health care cov­er­age for more than 11 million Amer­i­cans.

Trump took his most con­crete step to dis­man­tle the ACA on Thurs­day, when he signed an ex­ec­u­tive or­der that would al­low in­sur­ers to sell short-term plans that don’t meet ACA guide­lines.

“Since I be­came pres­i­dent of the United States, I just keep hear­ing ‘re­peal and re­place, re­peal and re­place.’ Well, we’re start­ing that process,” Trump said, promis­ing the or­der would be the first of many steps.

Un­der the or­der, con­sumers could pur­chase short-term health plans that would cover peo­ple for up to a year as part of as­so­ci­a­tions of small busi­nesses or in­di­vid­u­als and across state lines.

ACA sup­port­ers are con­cerned that if Oba­macare al­ter­na­tives are made more avail­able and at-

MICHAEL REYNOLDS, EPA

Pres­i­dent Trump is­sued an ex­ec­u­tive or­der on health care plans.

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