Tags: House | GOP | Clash | White House | Obamacare | Subpoenas

House GOP, White House Clash Over Obamacare Subpoenas

Image: House GOP, White House Clash Over Obamacare Subpoenas
Texas Rep. Kevin Brady. (Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 02 Jun 2016 09:40 AM

The latest front in an ongoing war over Obamacare between the White House and House Republicans is centering on subpoenas for documents relating to the healthcare law's cost-sharing reduction program — and the administration's refusal to hand them over.

The chairmen of the House Ways and Means committee, Texas Rep. Kevin Brady, and Energy and Commerce committee, Michigan Rep. Fred Upton have fired off a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell complaining about the stonewalling, The Hill reports.

"Your refusal to provide the requested documents and information raises serious concerns about the Department's willingness to be accountable for the lawful execution of laws passed by Congress," the lawmakers' letter sent Tuesday states.

Republicans argue both the Basic Health Program, aimed at providing choices for low-income people who don't qualify for Medicaid, the law's "cost-sharing reductions" that help lower out-of pocket-costs for low-income Obamacare enrollees are illegally funded because they have no congressional appropriation.

In a case brought by House Republicans, a federal judge agreed with the lawmakers that the administration doesn't have the authority to pay out the cost-sharing reductions; the decision will be appealed.

The Hill reports the battle has intensified, however, with the release last week of a transcript of a deposition from former IRS official David Fisher, who said some IRS officials, including himself, had raised concerns about the legality of the cost sharing reduction payments in 2014. The White House argues the information is confidential, The Hill reports.

Ultimately, it's likely the White House will invoke executive privilege to protect the documents, The Hill reports.

"It's a common practice over the course of many administrations," William Burck, former special counsel to President George W. Bush tells The Hill.

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The latest front in an ongoing war over Obamacare between the White House and House Republicans is centering on subpoenas for documents relating to the healthcare law's cost-sharing reduction program - and the administration's refusal to hand them over.
House, GOP, Clash, White House, Obamacare, Subpoenas
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2016-40-02
Thursday, 02 Jun 2016 09:40 AM
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