U.S. President-elect Donald Trump says his plan to replace President Obama’s healthcare program is “formulated down to the final strokes,” and will be unveiled soon.
In an interview with the Washington Post posted late Sunday, Trump said his goal was “insurance for everybody,” but that he declined to provide specifics.
One thing he did specify was wanting to bring down healthcare costs by publicly pressuring drug companies to lower their prices.
Repealing the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, is a major priority for Trump in the beginning of his administration. The program passed Congress in 2010 when Democrats were in control, but now Republicans have majorities in both the Senate and the House of Representatives, and with Trump as president they can take action to reform a system they say is too expensive and does not work.
Last week, Congress approved the beginning steps toward repeal, though Republicans have not made clear a plan to replace the program, which brought health insurance to more than 20 million Americans.
Trump also told the Post his team is close to finalizing plans for what he called “great” tax cuts for the middle class and reducing corporate tax rates to 15 percent in a bid to boost job creation.
The president-elect also gave a joint interview with The Times of London and Germany’s Bild newspaper, telling them German Chancellor Angela Merkel erred in letting hundreds of thousands of migrants into Germany last year.
Trump said, “I think she made one very catastrophic mistake and that was taking in all of these illegals, you know, taking all of the people from wherever they came from.”
Most of the migrants are Muslims who poured into Western Europe to escape war, terrorism and poverty in places such as Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Trump hastened to add that he always had “great respect” for Merkel and called her a “fantastic” leader. But he said Germans “got a clear impression” of the consequences of her immigration policy — a likely reference to the December Christmas market truck attack in Berlin that killed 12.
The driver who mowed down the shoppers was Tunisian and came to Germany before Merkel opened the door to Middle Eastern war refugees. He fled to Italy after the attack and later was killed by police.
Trump blamed the refugee crisis as the reason for Britain’s decision to leave the European Union, calling it “the straw that broke the camel’s back.”
“I do believe this. If they (the EU) hadn’t been forced to take in all of the refugees, so many…I think that you wouldn’t have a Brexit.”
But he still called Brexit a good thing, and forecast other countries bailing out of the EU, saying they, like Britain, want their own identity.
“I do think keeping it together is not going to be as easy as a lot of people think. If refugees keep pouring into different parts of Europe…people are angry about it.”
Trump also told the British and German newspapers that NATO is “obsolete” because “it was designed many many years ago…the countries aren’t paying what they’re supposed to pay…it’s obsolete because it wasn’t taking care of terror.”
But he immediately followed that by saying NATO is “very important to me.”
Source: Voice of America