By Elise Viebeck - 12/10/14 10:39 AM EST
The nearly $1.1-trillion spending bill released late Tuesday by House lawmakers targets government payments to health insurance companies under ObamaCare that critics have decried as an industry "bailout."
A commonly used tool in public policy, risk corridors have become a political football since Sen. Marco RubioMarco RubioRubio: 'I didn't run for the Senate to run for president again' Sunday shows preview: Next steps after Trump upheaval O'Malley gives Trump a nickname: 'Chicken Donald' MORE (R-Fla.) highlighted the ObamaCare provision as a "bailout" in November of last year. Since then, activists with Heritage Action and other groups have repeatedly sought to kill the payments in major fiscal negotiations.
The "cromnibus" spending bill would allow the government to continue collecting payments from insurers that post better-than-expected results under ObamaCare and passing them to companies that do worse. But it would not permit the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to make additional funds available for insurers that are struggling.
The inclusion of the language Wednesday widens the rift between health insurance companies and Republican lawmakers, once their steadfast allies. Risk corridors had been set to continue in 2015 and stop in 2016.