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Trump Administration To End Critical Obamacare Subsidies To Insurers

The Trump administration is scrapping a critical set of Obamacare subsidies that help lower-income Americans pay for health care.

The White House said in a statement late Thursday it will stop paying what's known as cost-sharing reduction payments, or CSRs. 

These payments are made to health insurance companies to help qualified enrollees afford co-pays, deductibles and other out-of-pocket expenses.

The White House said the federal budget doesn't set aside money for those subsidy payments. And, therefore, the government "cannot lawfully make" them.

SEE MORE: Democrats Are Happy To Fight The Obamacare Fight In 2018

President Donald Trump previously indicated he was thinking about halting the payments to put more pressure on lawmakers to repeal Obamacare.

But experts have warned that stopping CSR payments could throw the Obamacare marketplaces for a loop and force some insurers to hike premiums or stop offering health plans altogether.

And Democratic leaders aren't happy about it. In a joint statement, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called the move "a spiteful act of vast, pointless sabotage."

It's unclear exactly when the Trump administration plans to end the CSR payments.

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