Senators to strip health insurers of antitrust exemption

A group of Senate Democratic leaders is set to announce Wednesday that they have decided to strip health insurers of their antitrust exemption.

According to a post on Twitter from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) this morning, Reid, Senate Judiciary Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), and Democratic Caucus Chairman Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) would make the announcement about the antitrust rules this morning.

Reid tweeted Wednesday:

Leahy, Schumer and I will announce today @ 11:30am ET that we will strip the health ins industry of its exemption from antritrust laws

The move mirrors actions taken by House leaders to also include the change in antitrust rules in their version of health reform legislation.

The House and Senate Democrats' jab toward insurers also comes after the industry had launched critical reports over the differing health bills, warning that the reform plans would result in higher premiums for consumers, were they to become law.

Reid's words serve as confirmation that the Senate will move on the initiative, first floated by Leahy, after momentum appeared to move toward the new antitrust rule.

Cross-posted to the Twitter Room.