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article imageOp-Ed: Trump's fear tactic threatens to cut Obamacare payments

By Karen Graham     Apr 13, 2017 in Politics
Donald Trump likes to get his way and has no problem with using outrageous threats. His latest threat? If the Democrats won't give in to doing away with Obamacare, he will freeze payments to health insurers, throwing the insurance industry into turmoil.
Let's see, so far Trump has threatened to keep Muslims, Mexicans and who knows what other nationalities out of his country, and I say "his" country for a reason. Then, not stopping there, he threatened the automotive industry and any other industry who would dare to build a manufacturing plant in another country.
But let's get to the Trump administration's repeal of the Affordable Care Act, or as it is known, Obamacare. After Paul Ryan introduced a Republican version of an Obamacare replacement package, the legislation went through a number of delays as lawmakers quibbled over what their constituents would say if they did vote for repeal.
More than 30 House Republicans had threatened to reject the bill; its supporters needed at least 21 GOP votes for passage. Following news of the delayed vote, Trump issued an ultimatum to the divided GOP lawmakers — vote for the AHCA or let Obamacare continue and deal with the political fallout.
Republican members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee begin work on the proposed American He...
Republican members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee begin work on the proposed American Health Care Act, the Republican attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare, on Capitol Hill March 8, 2017
When Ryan finally had to tell the president he was pulling the legislation, Trump was reportedly livid. He blamed the GOP, then the Democrats, and after stewing about it, finally decided he was going forward and focusing on tax reform. Between all the other black clouds hanging over the White House, many people really thought the Donald would lay off health care reform for a little while.
But, between dropping missiles on Syria and surprising the hell out of everybody by dropping the "Mother of all bombs" on a bunch of underground ISIS passageways in Afghanistan, he is still trying to get Obamacare out of the way. So on Wednesday, he dropped a bomb on the American public.
In an interview with the Washington Post on Wednesday, Trump threatened to withhold Obamacare subsidies paid to health insurers in order to force Democrats to negotiate a new deal, according to the BBC.
"I don't want people to get hurt," Trump said. "What I think should happen and will happen is the Democrats will start calling me and negotiating."
Donald Trump's plan to replace Obamacare has faced criticism from far-right lawmakers for being...
Donald Trump's plan to replace Obamacare has faced criticism from far-right lawmakers for being too similar to the Affordable Care Act
Just so people know, leading healthcare industry groups, including America’s Health Insurance Plans, the American Medical Association, and the American Hospital Association have all written to Trump and to Congress, asking him to continue funding the payments or the healthcare industry would be thrown into chaos.
Eric Levitz points out very succinctly in New York Magazine: "Trump's hostage and his ransom are the same things: He's threatening to cut off health-insurance subsidies for poor people if Democrats don't vote for his healthcare plan, which significantly reduces health-insurance subsidies for poor people."
Donald Trump has labeled himself as the "great negotiator," and savior of the American dream. However, if what we are seeing is an example of how he gets things done, forget it. He behaves more like a spoiled brat, and if he doesn't get his way, his only recourse is to issue threats, and that is not the way to lead people.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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