GOP calls for suspension of O-Care subsidies

House Republicans say the administration should stop all subsidies under ObamaCare until it proves it is sending the right amount to people.

Rep. Charles Boustany (R- La.) warned of a “nightmare scenario” during the 2015 tax-filing season because of differences between the subsidies people are given and those they are actually eligible to receive.

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“Although these subsidies are going directly to insurers, next year the IRS will be in the position of recouping overpayments directly from individuals,” he said. “Many of these individuals will end up with unexpected tax debt through no fault of their own but from simply not understanding the quirks and complexities of the President’s health care law.”

“Blame for this mess falls squarely on the White House,” said Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas), who faulted the Obama administration’s eagerness to push through healthcare reforms regardless of the cost and also called for the payments to be halted.

GOP oversight on the issue follows a report that found millions of people could have to pay back a portion of their ObamaCare health insurance subsidies because they weren’t actually eligible to achieve what they received. 

Immediately following reports of discrepancies, Rep. Diane Black (R-Tenn.) reintroduced a bill that would halt all subsidies to ObamaCare recipients until the system is fixed.

Democrats accused Republicans of seeking to undermine the healthcare law now that people are starting to receive benefits.

“Our Republican colleagues have called us again this morning to once again to try tear down the Affordable Care Act,” said Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.). “It really is a disappointing thing on the part of my Republican colleagues because the Affordable Care Act is working.”

He said Republicans were making a bigger deal over the issue than necessary since only a small fraction of people eligible for subsidies might have to pay some amount back to the government.

Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) said halting all subsidy payments until application data has been verified would hurt the overwhelming majority of insurance holders.