Trump signs executive order on Obamacare

Washington, Jan 21 (IANS) US President Donald Trump on Friday night signed an executive order aimed at trying to fulfil one of his most impassioned campaign promises; repealing the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or the Obamacare.

The executive order signed in the Oval Office is designed “to ease the burden of Obamacare as we transition from repeal and replace,” White House press secretary Sean Spicer told the media.

Spicer did not respond when asked for further details, CNN reported.

In addition to the presidential action on Obamacare, White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus will also send out a memo to all government agencies and departments calling for a regulatory freeze, Spicer said.

With his signature, Trump sent a powerful signal on Day One of his presidency: His top priority in the Oval Office will be dismantling the Affordable Care Act, a law that covers some 20 million Americans.

The signing of the order also highlighted how deeply divisive Obamacare remains seven years after its inception: passing a health care reform bill was one of former President Barack Obama’s first priorities when he took office in 2009; overhauling it is now an urgent mission of Obama’s successor, CNN reported.

Also on Friday, shortly after Trump was sworn into, the newly updated White House website said the new administration will eliminate the Climate Action Plan, the centrepiece of Obama’s climate legacy that aims to cut carbon emissions from power plants.

Trump also signed papers confirming the appointments of James Mattis as Secretary of Defense and John Kelly as Secretary of Homeland Security.

–IANS

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