U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said Sunday she is “troubled by the uncertainty” created by the Trump administration around a subsidy that allows low-income people to afford health coverage under the Affordable Care Act.

In an appearance on the NBC News program “Meet the Press,” Collins was asked by host Chuck Todd whether Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price was trying to undermine the ACA. She said the attempted rollback of subsidies is destabilizing insurance markets. The ACA’s cost-sharing subsidy, which has been targeted in Republican repeal efforts, helps low-income policyholders afford co-pays and deductibles.

“I hear this described by some as an insurance company bailout,” said Collins, who was one of three Republican senators to vote against and help defeat the latest Republican effort to repeal and replace the ACA early Friday. “That’s not what it is. It’s vital assistance to people who make between 100 and 250 percent of the poverty level and allows them to afford their out-of pocket costs.

“And the uncertainty about whether that subsidy is going to continue month to month is clearly contributing to the destabilization of insurance markets. And that’s what Congress needs to end.”

Speaking from Bangor, she called on Congress to appropriate the money needed to allow the subsidy to continue.

Collins also appeared on CNN’s “State of the Union” program with Jake Tapper. Asked if a threat President Trump made to rescind funding for health care insurance for members of Congress would change her vote, Collins had a familiar answer for the White House.

“No,” she said.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.