President Donald Trump (Photo: White House)

A top Republican senator says he has backing from President Donald Trump to try to hammer out a bipartisan Affordable Care Act deal with Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash.

The senator, Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., told reporters in Washington he has support for his negotiations from Trump, according to separate reports from CNN and Bloomberg.

(Related: Math Geniuses Size Up 5 ACA Change Ideas)

Alexander said he and Murray hope to come up with the support to appropriate and extend funding for a major Affordable Care Act subsidy program, the cost-sharing reduction subsidy program. The program helps low-income Affordable Care Act public exchange plan users pay their deductibles, co-payments and coinsurance amounts.

One challenge is attracting enough Republican votes in both the House and the Senate to keep an Affordable Care Act subsidy program alive.

A related, but separate, challenge is rounding up enough support from Republicans to getting a subsidy funding measure onto the floor in both the House and the Senate.

“Our goal is to find a consensus of a significant number of Republicans and Democrats who are willing to support and co-sponsor a limited agreement that extends cost-sharing payments for two years and gives states meaningful flexibility,” Alexander said, according to the CNN account of his remarks.

—-Read 3 Weird Ways a 2018 ACA Subsidy Cut Could Help You on ThinkAdvisor.


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