Feb 3, 2017

What to watch for in Trump's first big Obamacare rule

AP file photo

One immediate thing the insurers can look forward to: the Trump administration has sent a "market stabilization" rule to the Office of Management and Budget for review. It won't be released until OMB clears it, but Edmund Haislmaier, a senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation who worked on Trump's Health and Human Services transition team, has pretty good idea of what's likely to be in it.

Most likely, it will be the quickest fixes the Trump administration can make to tighten the Obamacare enrollment rules. The leading options: narrowing the reasons to let people sign up outside of the regular enrollment season, making people prove they're eligible for those special enrollment categories, and cracking down on people who haven't paid their premiums. Those are all issues that are "fairly easy to fix" and could convince insurers to be "less defensive" in their pricing, Haislmaier said.

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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Trump's week of viral quicksand

Data: NewsWhip; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Stories about President Trump's photo op at St. John's church after peaceful protesters were forcefully cleared from the area averaged the most online attention of any issue about the president this week.

Why it matters: Trump's force-over-compassion approach to the demonstrators protesting the murder of George Floyd had Republican allies backpedaling to keep a distance — and led to a wave of condemnations that got plenty of online traction on their own.

Biden formally secures Democratic presidential nomination

Joe Biden speaks at Delaware State University's student cente on June 5. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden became the formal Democratic presidential nominee on Friday evening, per AP.

The big picture: Biden has been the presumptive frontrunner to take on President Trump since Sen. Bernie Sanders suspended his campaign in early April.