WASHINGTON, D.C. – After teaming up with Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and signing an executive order Thursday to expand access to Association Health Plans that have the potential to dramatically increase access and lower premiums for healthcare, President Trump maintained his Obamacare slaying momentum before dawn Friday by announcing his administration will halt subsidy payments to insurers immediately.
The announcement caused Democrats to have conniptions as Trump continues to dismantle Obamacare within the confines of his authority in the Oval Office.
The subsidies in question were for cost-sharing reductions aimed at insurers, which provide an additional subsidy to people who earn up to 250 percent of the poverty line, representing a little more than half of people enrolled in coverage through the health law’s exchanges.
Originally the subsidies were authorized by the law, but Congress rejected an appropriations request from the Obama Administration to fund them. Obama, in typical fashion, showed absolutely no deference to the rule of law and used some financial trickery to fund them anyway. Estimates indicate that the program would funnel about $130 billion to insurers over the course of a decade. That’s $130 billion in theft from the Treasury, also known as ‘Joe the Taxpayer.’
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For scale, that is equal to nearly three Bernie Madoffs.
After Trump’s decision to end the illegal payments, the Justice Department took swift action, notifying a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., in connection with a related lawsuit that an upcoming Oct. 18 payment “will not occur.”
Democrat N.C. Attorney General Josh Stein joined the chicken little chorus by announcing he would sue the Trump administration and claiming the decision violates the “law and constitution.”
I am suing President Trump for his unlawful & reckless decision to stop payments that help 1/2 million NCians afford health insurance. pic.twitter.com/n2UU94QwJZ
— Josh Stein (@JoshStein_) October 13, 2017
However, according to federal courts, the constitutional violations were more likely committed by President Obama when he approved the payments in the first place because appropriations of that kind must come from Congress.
The White House said the government cannot legally continue to pay the so-called cost-sharing subsidies because they lack a formal authorization by Congress. Officials said a legal opinion from the Justice Department supports that conclusion.
The administration had been making the payments from month to month, even as Trump threatened to cut them off to force Democrats to negotiate over health care.
The decision is one of the most significant steps taken in the president’s bid to ultimately “repeal and replace” the Affordable Care Act.
Now, with the Democrats so worked up over a President finally willing to right the wrongs of the Obama Administration, Trump is asking them to put up or shut up.
The Democrats ObamaCare is imploding. Massive subsidy payments to their pet insurance companies has stopped. Dems should call me to fix!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 13, 2017
Trump’s recent shift to the Right, after flirting with ‘Chuck and Nancy’ in late summer during debt ceiling negotiations, should be comforting to voters that were clear in their demands to dismantle the Big Government machine that was grown so effectively under Obama, Democrats, and status quo Republicans over the years.
With recent assists from Liberty Leader Sen. Rand Paul and a blossoming relationship with North Carolina Congressman and Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows, Trump and the ever present freedom movement may be generating enough momentum to take flight once again.