Apparently the “consummate dealmaker” is thinking that if he withholds Obamacare subsidy payments from insurers that he could undermine the markets enough that poor people won’t get insurance and PRESTO Democrats will come to the table to make a deal to officially undermine Obamacare.
If you remember, the GOP filed a lawsuit to stop subsidy payments that the federal government was making to insurers providing compensation for the cost of discounted deductibles for low-income Obamacare enrollees these companies were providing. A federal judge did agree with the premise of the GOP’s argument but the decision was on hold while the White House appealed. Trump is playing with the idea of withdrawing the appeal, which would definitely put the insurance market into chaos and the poor people getting insurance under the ACA would likely no longer be able to get that.
You can see the problem with this “deal” a mile away, right? He is talking about damaging the ACA coverage of the poor so that Democrats can come to the table to damage the ACA coverage for the poor. And then there’s the idea that people will blame Democrats for this — the GOP and trump have been on a jihad to kill this insurance for poor people since it started. Repeal and replace was supposed to be how they finally got their wish. And yet! And yet, they still couldn’t put a stake in it, largely because of the politics. No one is seriously going to blame Democrats for this since the destruction of Obamacare has been a key piece of the GOP agenda for years.
The other problem with this deal is that the ACA is still the law. And he is supposed to uphold it. At least until Congress can get its act together to change it.
But I do think that this approach screws over the moderate House GOP who need to sell this back home. Which is just as stupid, because he needs these people. More then Democrats, really. And in the meantime, Democrats should put forward a plan to fix that expands coverage and brings down cost — Medicare for All is a possible start.
I wish I could remember where I read this so I could credit it, but some wag noted that the Dems response to this threat should be:
Our answer is nothing. And we would personally appreciate it if you would pay for your own fucking golf trips and legal separation from your spouse.