All Sections

Home  Editorials

Outlaw spending: NH delegation ignores the law

October 14. 2017 6:02PM

U.S. President Donald Trump smiles after signing an Executive Order to make it easier for Americans to buy bare-bone health insurance plans and circumvent Obamacare rules at the White House in Washington, D.C., Oct. 12, 2017. (REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque)

The four liberal Democrats who make up New Hampshire's delegation in Congress all agree President Donald Trump should have authority to ignore Congress, and spend taxpayer money on anything he wants.

They don't put it that way, of course. They claim last week's decision by the White House to end the "cost-sharing reduction payments" to insurance companies on the Affordable Care Act exchanges is yet another Republican attempt to undermine President Obama's signature health care law.

It is, in fact, an attempt to comply with the law.

Congress hasn't appropriated any money for the insurance company bailouts since 2014. In 2016, a federal District Court found the subsidies were unconstitutional because the President may not spend money Congress has not appropriated.

New Hampshire's federal representatives are now urging Trump to ignore the law, and spend $7 billion a year on insurance company bailouts Congress hasn't approved.

It is unconscionable for members of Congress to abrogate their power of the purse just because they lost a budget battle.

Blaming the Trump administration for the failure of the ACA to hold down insurance costs is like blaming the rooster for the sunshine. The problems with Obamacare were baked in when the Democratic Congress rammed the disastrous bill into law without reading it.

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen and Rep. Carol Shea-Porter voted for this mess. Sen. Maggie Hassan and Rep. Anne Kuster blindly support it. As health insurance markets buckle and premiums soar, they should take some responsibility for the mess they created.

Health Politics Editorial

Newsletter Signup