Friday, December 15, 2017

Donald Trump’s changes to the Affordable Care Act will deal the biggest blow to the supporters who helped him secure the presidency, according to new analysis.

Nearly 70 per cent of people benefiting from cost-sharing reduction subsidies, which Mr Trump pledged to end by executive order last week, live in states that he won during the election last November.

Late on Thursday the White House announced it would stop the subsidies which were established under Obamacare and are paid by the federal government to insurers to help reduce health care costs for lower-income Americans.

It is estimated that the payments benefited 4 million people in the 30 states that Trump took in the election, according to analysis from the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Of the 10 states who benefit the most from the subsidies all but one voted for the president.

Marsha Clark,61, is a real estate broker living an hour from Louisville, Kentucky, a state in which 71,000 of those buying health insurance through the federal exchange system are thought to benefit from the subsidies. 

She said: “I’m stressed out about the insurance, stressed out about the overall economy, and I’m very stressed out about our president.”

Sherry Riggs, a barber from Florida, who benefits from the current system said the change would probably be a “death sentence” for some people.

“I think it’s kind of a tragic decision on the president’s part. It scares me because I don’t think I’ll be able to afford it next year.”

Clark pays $1,108 (£833) a month for health insurance through the system.

Mr Trump has been threatening to end the current system for months as part of his plans to repeal Obamacare. 

Following the Republicans’ failure to repeal Obama’s landmark healthcare changes at the end of last month the Trump administration has confirmed they will stop the subsidies and cut funding for Obamacare outreach, threatening the program through which millions of American’s buy health insurance.

Additional reporting by The Associated Press