- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 9, 2014

A coalition of Senate Republicans led by Florida Sen. Marco Rubio sent a letter to House Speaker John Boehner Wednesday asking him to include in the next spending bill a ban on President Obama using tax dollars to bail out insurers suffering financial losses under Obamacare.

According to the senators, most health insurers expect to receive a total of $1 billion through the risk corridors program set up under Obamacare, which allows profitable insurers to help struggling companies.

But the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has indicated that profitable insurance companies may not have enough money to completely cover the losses under Obamacare and “other sources of funding” may have to be used.

Mr. Rubio and other Republicans, including Sens. Rand Paul of Kentucky and Ted Cruz of Texas, all potential 2016 GOP presidential candidates, argue that only Congress has the authority to authorize the health care bailout.

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell said Thursday the administration will work with federal lawmakers if they need an appropriation for the program, a request that congressional Republicans are unlikely to entertain.

“We don’t think it’s a question that will be need to be faced right here in ‘15,” she told reporters at an event hosted by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the HealthAffairs publication. “If it ever does become a question, I think we’ve made clear we’ll work with the Congress on getting any additional language.”

Current government funding runs out on Dec. 11, setting the next deadline for Congress to act.

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