Trump threatens to play hard ball on Obamacare payments


On Saturday, President Trump threatened to cut off payouts to insurance companies to subsidize expenses for low-income policy holders. Trump also threatened to eliminate Congress’ exemption from onerous Obamacare regulations.

The president’s warning to ax health care contributions for lawmakers and their staff shows Trump is playing with live fire in pushing Congress back into action on health care.

The Affordable Care Act pushed lawmakers and their staffs off a federal health care plan and required them to get health care through one of the markets established by the law. Since 2014, the federal government has categorized congressional offices as “small businesses” and made an “employer contribution” of about 72 percent to the plans they purchase — a contribution Trump is now threatening to end.

In a letter to Trump earlier this month, a group of conservative groups argued that the congressional cushion lawmakers get from the actual premiums have blinded them to the pain that Americans are suffering under Obamacare.

“This ongoing fraud improperly allows Congress and its staff to avoid the pain the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act … is inflicting on millions of other Americans,” the groups said in the letter.

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