President Trump is expected to stop paying vital subsidies that offset the costs for insurers of covering lower-income people, according to a report from Politico Thursday night.
The payments, called cost-sharing reductions (CSRs), are the subject of a lawsuit filed by House Republicans during the Obama administration, which House Republicans won. The Obama administration appealed and continued making the payments, which are worth an estimated $7 billion per year.
Trump can simply drop the appeal and stop making the payments, which he’s suggested he may do in the past. Although Trump is known to change his mind at the last minute, if the executive branch stops making the payments, it will likely trigger lawsuits from insurers who rely on the funding.
Many insurers did anticipate the move. When providers filed their rate requests earlier this year, many who requested increases cited concerns that Trump would stop making the CSR payments as reason for requesting increases.
Politico’s Thursday night report came hours after Trump signed into law an executive order loosening Obamacare restrictions after having tried and failed a number of times to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act in Congress.