Baldwin Seeks to Overturn Trump Rule on Short-Term Health Insurance Plans

Rule allows purchase of cheaper short-term coverage for a longer period of time

Tammy Baldwin
Tammy Baldwin / Getty Images
September 5, 2018

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D., Wis.) has introduced legislation that seeks to do away with a rule on short-term health insurance plans for individuals.

Baldwin authored and introduced a bill last week that would rid the rule implemented by President Donald Trump that allows individuals to purchase cheaper short-term coverage, which contain fewer benefits, for a longer period of time as an alternative option to the Affordable Care Act.

"The Trump Administration is rewriting the rules on guaranteed health care protections that millions of Americans depend on," Baldwin said. "They are moving forward on an expansion of junk insurance plans that can deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions and don't have to cover essential services like prescription drugs, emergency room visits and maternity care."

"President Trump's latest act of sabotage will expand junk insurance plans that could increase costs and reduce access to quality coverage for millions, force premium increases on older Americans, and harm people with pre-existing conditions," Baldwin said. "That's why I am leading this effort in the U.S. Senate to take action and stop this sabotage. Instead of expanding junk insurance plans, we need to protect people's access to quality, affordable care."

Under Obamacare, the average short-term plan was reduced from 12 months to three months. Trump's rule extends the coverage date back to 12 months with an option of renewal for up to three years.

Baldwin, who hopes to force a vote on the bill, gathered 30 Democratic senators to cosponsor the legislation. Baldwin is in favor of a 'Medicare for All' approach to health care, which is projected to cost $32 trillion.

Leah Vukmir, Baldwin's Republican challenger in Wisconsin and a nurse, has lambasted the first-term senator for her health care stance.

"Being a nurse means caring for people, listening to them and doing everything you can to help them. That's why I am so disappointed that Sen. Baldwin isn't listening to those who want more affordable choices. Instead, she relies on failing, top-down government solutions from Washington," Vukmir said.

"There is no one-size-fits-all solution to fix healthcare, but I can tell you Baldwin's ideas are exactly that, as proven by her support of a $32 trillion socialized, government takeover of healthcare. She thinks Washington knows best."

Vukmir added that patients with pre-existing conditions should be covered and said that people should not buy into Baldwin's "lie that taking care of those who need pre-existing coverage and providing all Wisconsinites with more affordable options are mutually exclusive."

Sen. Ron Johnson (R., Wis.) also criticized Baldwin's bill.

"Senator Baldwin continues to ignore the forgotten men and women, who, under Obamacare, have seen their premiums double, triple and in some cases quadruple," Johnson said. "Her solution is to restrict the options families have to choose the health insurance that is right for them."

Baldwin's campaign did not return a request for comment on wanting to overturn the rule on short-term insurance plans.

Published under: Tammy Baldwin