Like many of you, I'd be cool with it If I didn't have to look at another CBO score for the rest of my life, but unfortunately this is very important.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has scored what will happen if the Trump regime decides to unilaterally cut cost-sharing subsidies for insurers and the results are more or less what you would expect.
Among other things, the CBO estimates that costs for the federal government would increase by $194 billion over the next nine years.
You can read the full CBO score here:
Implementing the policy would increase the federal deficit, on net, by $194 billion from 2017 through 2026, CBO and JCT estimate. Total federal subsidies for health insurance in the nongroup market—in particular, the sum of the premium tax credits and the CSR payments—would increase for two reasons: The average amount of subsidy per person would be greater, and more people would receive subsidies in most years.
Some people will ask why cutting cost-sharing subsidies won't actually save the federal government money and the answer is the funds aren't appropriated by Congress. The cost-sharing subsidies are redistributed from one insurer to another. Trump and his GOP colleagues describe this as a government "bail out," but it would be more appropriate to say insurers are bailing out each other in a transfer facilitated by the federal government.
Cutting the cost-sharing subsidies won't save the government or taxpayers money in the form of reduced costs, it will simply shift more costs back onto taxpayers.
The CBO also estimated that cutting off subsidies will also increase individual premiums by 20 percent on top of the premium hikes Trump has already caused by threatening the law.
If Trump decides to cut cost-sharing subsides, the most likely time frame for that will be next month when Congress is deciding if we're going to have a government shutdown or not when fiscal 2018 begins on October 1st.