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Trump tells Democrats to ‘call me to fix’ the ‘broken mess’ that is health care

J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi departed a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington after responding to President Donald Trump's executive action that will halt payments to insurers under the Obama-era health care law on Friday.

By Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump is inviting congressional Democrats to ‘‘call me to fix’’ America’s health care system, as he prepares an order ceasing federal subsidy payments to health insurers.

In a pre-dawn post on his Twitter account Friday, the president reiterated his oft-stated argument that the Obama-era health care law is a “broken mess” and “imploding.”

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Since his presidential campaign and nearly nine months in office, Trump has persistently called for getting rid of the 2010 Obama law. His fellow Republicans joined him in that cause, but neither Trump nor the GOP has been able to muster sufficient strength to get the repeal bill through the Senate.

In a brash move likely to roil insurance markets, Trump will ‘‘immediately’’ halt payments to insurers under the Obama-era health care law he has been trying to unravel for months.

The Department of Health and Human Services made the announcement in a statement late Thursday. ‘‘We will discontinue these payments immediately,’’ said acting HHS Secretary Eric Hargan and Medicare administrator Seema Verma. Sign-up season for subsidized private insurance starts Nov. 1, in less than three weeks, with about 9 million people currently covered.

In a separate statement, the White House said the government cannot legally continue to pay the so-called cost-sharing subsidies because they lack a formal authorization by Congress.