In the News: One Last Medicaid Attack

Democrats fell into Trump’s trap and now the Senate found some extra time for another vote on a health care repeal bill intended to destroy the Affordable Care Act. Andy Slavitt shared this op-ed that will go to print Monday in the Star Tribune. 

So does the new space cleared on the congressional calendar, thanks to the surprising short-term deal President Donald Trump struck Wednesday with Democrats on raising the debt ceiling, preventing a federal government shutdown and providing Hurricane Harvey aid. These three policy heavy-lifts, now pushed to December, were expected to leave time for little else this month.
Although the Washington Post reports that Graham-Cassidy has “yet to gain significant traction,’’ Trump reportedly wants another vote. On Thursday, the two senators said they will introduce an updated version of their bill next week.

Repeated analyses by the Congressional Budget Office showed that the various GOP plans would all result in millions of Americans losing coverage. Graham-Cassidy contains the same warmed-over toxic stew that would lead to coverage losses — reduced subsidies to buy private insurance, weakened consumer protections and radical federal funding cuts for the Medicaid program. Generally, the only thing that is new is that it would shift federal dollars from states with bigger populations to smaller, more rural states — a sneaky maneuver that potentially could pick up more congressional votes.

The deadline to pass a repeal bill with only 50 votes from senators is September 30, and the House will have no choice but to rubber stamp.

Reminder of Topher Spiro’s list of 6 to-do’s by September 30:

Here we go! He needs 1) markup (to get McCain) 2) CBO score 3) parl review 4) 50 votes 5) floor time 6) House passage–all before Sept. 30

Shout out to CAP, BTW.

There is still plenty of time to screw millions of Americans so I have no doubt they can find a way. They already have McCain, they are just waiting until the last minute to show their hand.

Again, disabled kids make up a huge portion of the kids on Medicaid. If states have limited money, say from block grants, there is no way they can possibly cover every vulnerable person. They will simply run out of money. 

It doesn’t have to be this way.

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