A Republican argument for the passage of the American Health Care Act was the imminent failure of the Affordable Care Act. The Congressional Budget Office, CBO, found that insurance exchanges under the ACA were stable. The situation is changing. By threatening to withhold subsidies paid to insurance companies to reduce deductibles for low-income consumers, the Trump administration is rattling the health care markets and may have created a self-fulling prophecy — the collapse of the ACA.
Compounding the effect of withholding of subsidies is the loosening of enforcement by the Trump administration of the mandate for people to have health insurance coverage or pay a penalty. Without the mandate in effect healthier, younger individuals are less likely to purchase insurance, and the market shrinks to those with the greater health care needs, driving up premiums.
The ACA withers away, replaced by Trumpcare, with its CBO projection of 23 million losing insurance. Medicaid covering more than 74 million people is slashed by $834 billion and an additional $610 billion is cut under the Trump budget. These tax cuts flow to the top 1 percent which trickle down for the benefit of all. But really the fat cats are eating everyone else’s dinner.
Mickey Beary, Richland
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