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I asked our team to pause for family time this week before kids return to school. The homepage is updated daily. The Digest returns on Monday, August 2. —Mark Alexander

Political Editors / Aug. 2, 2018

Panic Ensues After Trump ‘Undermines’ ObamaCare

HHS new rule change now allows for short-term health insurance plans to last for up to three years.

On Wednesday, President Donald Trump’s Health and Human Services finalized a rule change that will allow people priced out of the ObamaCare exchanges to enroll in low-cost, short-term plans that offer limited coverage for up to three years. “We will deliver relief to American workers, families, and small businesses, who right now are being crushed by Obamacare, by increasing freedom, choice, and opportunity for the American people,” a statement from Trump read.

Under Barack Obama, short-term health insurance plans were only allowed to last for a length of just three months. This was intentional so as to prevent younger, healthier Americans from abandoning the higher costs under ObamaCare.

Following the new rule change, individuals can purchase short-term plans that don’t have to comply with ObamaCare’s litany of regulations, nor must they meet the costly benefit mandates. These short-term plans can deny coverage for pre-existing conditions and can charge more to sick individuals than those who are healthy. HHS Secretary Alex Azar noted, “These plans aren’t for everyone, but they provide a much more affordable option for millions of the forgotten men and women left out by the current system.” And Bruce Telkamp, CEO of HealthPocket and Agile Health Insurance, explained, “One-year short-term plans will bring immediate relief to consumers needing low premiums and unrestricted provider network coverage so they will not join the ranks of the uninsured.”

Meanwhile, the Leftmedia bemoaned the rule change as yet another instance of Trump’s ongoing effort to “sabotage” ObamaCare. But as Investor’s Business Daily cogently observed, “The truth — which Democrats will never admit — is that ObamaCare was failing long before President Donald Trump took the keys to the White House. It was failing because it was a horribly designed, centrally planned health care system built on regulations that had already failed in various states that previously experimented with them.” Trump has simply responded to the problem by offering a practical albeit partial solution to the millions of Americans who can’t afford ObamaCare.

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