Donald Trump is contemplating using the federal subsidies that many people need in order to afford health insurance as leverage to try to bring Democrats to the table to negotiate a new healthcare plan. He is threatening to remove them in a new budget which would mean that millions would immediately lose their health insurance and most of them would be the working poor.
He thinks that by threatening to hurt a group of Americans that the Democrats will be forced to negotiate. Many Republicans are not in favor of just ending the subsidies as they recognize that to do will mean that the marketplace will collapse and millions would be left without health insurance. It is another healthcare debacle about to happen.
Trump who sees this as a negotiating opportunity was incensed when on Monday the HHS told the New York Times that it was likely the payments would continue. On Tuesday they issued a denial. According to Politico they,
Two administration officials said the HHS rebuttal was personally ordered by an incensed Trump, who feared that the Times story hurt his negotiating position. Trump took the unusual step of calling HHS Secretary Tom Price to dictate a blistering statement that challenged the story and swiped at Democrats, one senior administration official said.
The Democrats have made it clear that they are not going to negotiate and will insist that funding for the subsidies be in the new spending bill. The current one runs out on April 28.