m3n4.net
m3n4.net April 21, 2019


Trump tees up a health care fight with an uncertain outcome

02 April 2019, 12:13 | Tara Lloyd

Welch: Trump health care turnaround blindsided GOP

A court has blocked a Trump administration rule allowing cheaper health insurance plans that don't provide consumer protections required by the federal Affordable Care Act

U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor ruled previous year that ObamaCare is no longer constitutional because the Republican tax overhaul eliminated the health care law's penalty for not having health insurance.

Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming, the third senator Trump name-checked, spoke with Trump about health care on Wednesday morning, but his staff said they did not have anything to share at the moment when asked about the specific working group. "Republicans can choose whether to respond to that attack by pointing to their own plan, or by letting Democrats devise a caricatured conservative plan to tie to them". Under the administration's rule, they would in effect be counted as having 51 employees.

U.S. District Judge John D. Bates blocked a rule that was finalized a year ago that allows small businesses and self-employed people to band together to purchase insurance known as association health plans.

Bates was nominated to the federal bench by then-President George W. Bush, a Republican.

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Trump has said association health plans would let Americans "escape some of Obamacare's most burdensome mandates".

"Trump has an idea on health care".

The White House is quietly working on a healthcare policy proposal to replace the Affordable Care Act, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the matter.

"Indeed, as the President directed, and the Secretary of Labor confirmed, the Final Rule was created to expand access to AHPs in order to avoid the most stringent requirements of the ACA", he wrote, using the acronym for the 2010 health care law. His ruling is being appealed by attorneys general from Democratic-led states to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

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New York, 10 other states and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit challenging the Association Health Plan rule. It's now fully supported by the Trump administration, which earlier had argued that only the law's protections for people with pre-existing conditions and its limits on how much insurers could charge older, sicker customers were constitutionally tainted. He found that administration officials failed to account for coverage losses and other potential harm, and sent the Health and Human Services Department back to the drawing board.

"The administration will continue to fight for sole proprietors and small businesses so that they can have the freedom to band together to obtain more affordable, quality healthcare coverage", a Justice Department spokesman said.

Bates' ruling comes after an intense week in the courts for the administration's health care policies.

That third Republican senator also told The Hill, "Sometimes, it's easy to write off the Affordable Care Act issues as political, and certainly, there's politics to it".

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