Bridget McGuire Blog

Trump Working to Sabotage Healthcare Markets, Withholding Payments Would Destroy Them

Trump will decide this week whether he will withhold crucial CSR payments as part of continued effort to sabotage healthcare markets.

Trump: “If ObamaCare is hurting people, & it is, why shouldn’t it hurt the insurance companies & why should Congress not be paying what public pays?”

Trump: “If a new HealthCare Bill is not approved quickly, BAILOUTS for Insurance Companies and BAILOUTS for Members of Congress will end very soon!”

Conway: “’He’s going to make that decision this week, and that’s a decision that only he can make,’ Ms. Conway said on ‘Fox News Sunday.’”

Trump’s suggestion has already created major uncertainty that has caused insurers to raise premiums or leave markets entirely. 

Associated Press: “Some insurers have cited the lack of a guarantee on the subsidies as a factor behind requested premium increases for next year.BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina blamed the problem for most of its nearly 23 percent premium increase for 2018. With a guarantee that Washington would continue honoring the subsidies, the insurer said it would have sought a hike of just under 9 percent.”

NPR: “Individuals could face sharply higher premiums and fewer choices if more health insurers leave the insurance marketplaces because of lingering uncertainty. State and industry officials around the United States are concerned that the federal government could stop funding so-called cost-sharing subsidies that reduce out-of-pocket costs for people with lower incomes.”

If Trump chooses to end CSR payments, he will directly impact millions of lower-income Americans who could see their premiums increase by as much as 19 percent.

CNBC: “Every month, insurers are supposed to get reimbursed for so-called CSR subsidies, which they pay out to help cut out-of-pocket costs for their lower-income Obamacare plan members.”

Kaiser: “A new Kaiser Family Foundation analysis finds that the average premium for a benchmark silver plan in Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplaces would need to increase by an estimated 19 percent for insurers to compensate for lost funding if they don’t receive federal payment for ACA cost-sharing subsidies.”

Americans know Trump and Republicans in Congress are responsible for any future problems with the ACA.

Kaiser: “With the future of any other replacement plans uncertain, this month’s survey also gauges who the public views as responsible for the 2010 health care law going forward. A majority (61 percent) of the public say that because President Trump and Republicans in Congress are in control of the government, they are now responsible for any problems with the ACA moving forward.”

Trump’s Week In Review: Condemnation And Chaos

This week Trump was rebuked for politicizing speeches to uniformed service members and the Boy Scouts, he was criticized by Republicans for his transgender ban, called on by members of his conservative base to fire his communications director over a vulgar tirade, and blasted by police departments for endorsing police brutality. 

Military officers were appalled by Trump encouraging service members to lobby for political policies in a speech on the USS Gerald Ford.

Washington Post: “Shortly after his tweet storm, which started just after 6:30 a.m. and lasted nearly two hours, Trump flew to Norfolk, where he injected a small dose of partisan politics into the ceremonial commissioning of a new naval warship.”

Former Deputy Assistant Secretary Of Defense Andrew Exum: “For that reason, former U.S. military officers were particularly appalled when the current president of the United States, in a speech commissioning the U.S. military’s latest and most powerful war machine, encouraged his uniformed audience to call their representatives to lobby for the president’s policies—including his budget increasing defense spending at the expense of other domestic priorities.”

The head of the Boy Scouts was forced to apologize for the political rhetoric in Trump’s speech to the organization.

Boy Scouts Of America Chief Executive, Michael Surbaugh: “I want to extend my sincere apologies to those in our Scouting family who were offended by the political rhetoric that was inserted into the jamboree. That was never our intent. The invitation for the sitting U.S. President to visit the National Jamboree is a long-standing tradition that has been extended to the leader of our nation that has had a Jamboree during his term since 1937.”

Republican lawmakers were critical of Trump’s decision to ban transgender service members.

FiveThirtyEight: Headline: “Republican Senators Aren’t Embracing Trump’s Transgender Military Ban

Huffington Post: “Trump’s decision seemed to be a move to appeal to the GOP’s conservative base. Yet, many of the Republicans who swiftly spoke out against it have tended to support socially conservative policies.  Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee, was one of the last to support overturning ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,’ which previously banned openly LGBTQ people from serving in the military.”

Conservatives questioned Trump’s hiring of Scaramucci after his vulgar tirade to the New Yorker, and called on Trump to fire him.

Republican Congressman Mo Brooks: “Republican Rep. Mo Brooks said Friday that White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci isn’t adding stability to the White House and that he would have fired Scaramucci for his expletive-laden interview with The New Yorker…  ‘He’s off the map. For him to use the kind of vulgar language he used with respect to Reince Priebus and Steve Bannon—both conservatives and liberals in the White House—I just don’t get why Donald Trump would put him, Mr. Scaramucci, into that position, given his rather reckless style,’ Brooks said on Fox News radio’s ‘Todd Starnes Show.’”

Evangelical Activist Bob Vander Plaats: “Bob Vander Plaats, an evangelical activist in Iowa, is urging President Trump to fire Anthony Scaramucci, the new White House communications director, for unleashing an expletive-filled tirade against Trump administration officials.  ‘Mr. President, it is time to look in the mirror, accept responsibility, apologize to the American people, and declare an end to this behavior immediately,’ Vander Plaats wrote Friday on the website of the Family Leader, a social conservative organization he runs.”

Police departments across the country quickly rebuked Trump’s endorsement of police brutality in a speech about gang violence.

CNN: “He praised the ‘rough’ officers of ICE and suggested that police shouldn’t protect the heads of suspects when they’re arrested. ‘When you see these thugs thrown into the back of a paddy wagon. You see them thrown in, rough. I said, ‘Please don’t be too nice,’ ‘ Trump said, mentioning observing the prisoner’s heads being shielded. ‘I said, ‘You can take the hand away.’ ‘”

Washington Post: “Police leaders across the country moved quickly to distance themselves from — or to outright condemn — President Trump’s statements about ‘roughing up’ people who’ve been arrested.”

Executive Director Of The Police Executive Research Forum: “‘It’s the wrong message,’ Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum, told Washington radio station WTOP while speaking of the trust-building work that departments have undertaken since King’s beating. ‘The last thing we need is a green light from the president of the United States for officers to use unnecessary force.’”

Burlington Police: “It is our sworn duty to protect people from unjustified violence and harm, no matter who disagrees

Suffolk County PD: “As a department, we do not and will not tolerate roughing up of prisoners.

Gainesville Police: “The @POTUS made remarks today that endorsed and condoned policy brutality. GPD rejects these remarks and continues to serve with respect.

Houston Police Chief: “To be clear, inappropriate attempt at gallows humor does not reflect values of respect & commitment to constitutional policing of profession

Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole: “Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole late Fridaynight released a statement that, in part, addresses remarks made by President Donald Trump where he encourages police to treat criminal suspects roughly… ‘Seattle’s police officers have embraced reform and have worked incredibly hard to build community trust. We do not intend to go backwards.’”


Trump, GOP in Chaos

Word of the week: Chaos. President Trump and the Republican Party proved this week that they cannot govern and have nothing to deliver to the American people except for more chaos. See for yourself from this week’s headlines:

CNN: White House week of chaos ends in open warfare

Vox: The Trump administration’s chaos has reached an astounding new level

Washington Post: ‘Another day of chaos at the White House’: Washington responds to major shake-up at White House

CNN: Why chaos in DC will cause concern in Eastern Europe

Roll Call: GOP Congress Blames White House Chaos for Failures

The Hill: Trump budget chief denies ‘chaos’ in the White House

Politico: To America, It Looks Like Chaos. For Trump, It’s Just Tuesday.

Time: Trump’s Attacks Sow Chaos In Washington

Axios: Inside the chaos on Trump’s transgender troops ban

MSNBC: Donald Trump’s ‘fine-tuned machine’ descends into chaos

Washington Post: Incredibly, the White House is spiraling even further into chaos

Roll Call: Chaos Consumes Future of Obamacare Repeal Effort

CNN: A general’s rigor could face hurdles under a chaos-prone boss

The Atlantic: Can John Kelly Stop the Chaos Inside Trump’s West Wing?