Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander told reporters Tuesday that he and Democratic Sen. Patty Murray have reached a deal that would formally appropriate Obamacare’s cost sharing reduction (CSR) payments.
The deal, which has been in the works since August, comes less than a week after President Donald Trump said his administration would stop the payments, saying it could not legally continue to do so.
CSR payments help to defray costs to insurers that are mandated to provide plans with low out-of-pocket costs to poorer Americans.
According to reports, the deal would continue the CSR payments for two years and restore $US106 million in outreach to encourage people to sign up for Obamacare plans during the upcoming open-enrollment period.
The Alexander-Murray talks were quashed by Republican leadership in September in favour of an attempt to pass the Graham-Cassidy legislation that would have repealed and replaced the Affordable Care Act. The two senators are the chair and ranking member on the Senate Health, Education, Labour, Pensions Committee, respectively.
At a press conference with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Tuesday, Trump endorsed the deal and said the White House was “involved” with the talks.
It is unclear whether the deal can succeed in Congress, given that House Speaker Paul Ryan previously said he would not bring a stabilisation bill to the floor.
This is a developing story…
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