President Trump plans to cut off key payments to insurers selling ObamaCare coverage, Politico reported Thursday, citing two sources familiar with the matter.
Such an action would represent Trump’s most aggressive move yet to dismantle ObamaCare, after GOP efforts to repeal and replace the health-care law failed this year.
Trump has repeatedly threatened to cut off the disbursements to insurers, known as cost sharing reduction (CSR) payments. They are worth an estimated $7 billion this year, Politico noted.
Cutting off the payments would likely throw the ObamaCare marketplace into chaos.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said about 1 million people would be uninsured in 2018, and insurance companies would raise premium prices by about 20 percent for ObamaCare plans if the payments were cut off.
CBO also said halting the payments would increase the federal deficit by $194 billion through 2026.
The payments help low-income people afford co-pays, deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs associated with health-insurance policies. Insurers have called the payments critical, saying that without them, they would have to massively increase premiums or exit the individual market.
Many insurers have already priced their plans for the coming open enrollment period, which begins Nov. 1.
The leaders of Senate Health Committee have been working toward a bipartisan deal to fund the CSR payments for two years in order to stabilize the markets in the short term.
The report on the CSR payments comes after Trump on Thursday signed an executive order aimed at taking action on ObamaCare on his own after Congress failed to repeal the law.
Trump said Thursday the order is “starting that process” to repeal the law. It will be the “first steps to providing millions of Americans with ObamaCare relief,” Trump said.
Updated: 10:17 p.m.