It looks like Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) may be getting his way with Republican efforts to change healthcare laws, at least in one capacity, as Trump may soon sign an executive order allowing the purchase of healthcare across state lines.
Paul first hinted at the executive order in a radio interview with Western Kentucky University Public Radio, where Paul claimed that Trump is considering an executive order on health care reform that may allow customers to form groups across state lines that purchase insurance together at lower rates depending on their needs.
This approach would create competition, reducing rates, and increasing consumer choices. However, opponents of the approach wish claim that that healthier people would flock to skimpier plans, leaving those who need more comprehensive plans with a higher bill to pay.
Paul broke down why that wouldn’t happen during the August radio interview.
“It’s the same principle as Wal-Mart,” Paul told WKU. “Wal-Mart can buy in such large bulk that you can get milk for a very reasonable price often just barely above their cost, and they do it because they have such large buying power.”
Fast forward to an MSNBC interview on Wednesday morning, where Paul mentioned the oncoming executive order, saying “I think there’s going to be big news from the White House in the next week or two, something they can do on their own.”
“I believe President Trump can legalize on his own the ability of individuals to join a group or health association across state lines to buy insurance,” Paul added. “This would bring enormous leverage to bringing down prices. It would also bring protection to individuals who feel left out, hung out to dry, basically.”
According to the Washington Examiner, a Senate GOP source said the executive action is a “done deal,” and will likely be announced “in the next few weeks.”
Trump later confirmed a “very major” executive order on Wednesday that would allow exactly the free market approach Paul has been pushing for.
“I’ll probably be signing a very major executive order where people can go out, cross state lines, do lots of things and buy their own health care, and that will be probably signed next week,” Trump told reporters. “It’s being finished now. It’s going to cover a lot of territory and a lot of people. Millions of people.”