No, President Trump is not ending Medicaid as we know it. Not even close. Like the Republicans in Congress, he is a welfare statist who has no philosophical objection to the existence of Medicaid or any other welfare program. Just look at the “Democratic” budget Trump submitted to Congress last year.
But the Trump administration has issued new guidelines via the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services that allow states to impose work requirements for able-bodied individuals to receive Medicaid.
Predictably, liberals are horrified.
Mary Beth Musucemi, associate director of the Kaiser Family Foundation’s Program on Medicaid and the Uninsured, said the new approach “will penalize individuals by having them lose health coverage, rather than incentivize them, as a voluntary program with adequately funded supportive services necessary to overcome barriers would.”
Eliot Fishman, senior health policy director at the consumer health lobby Families USA, called the new policy “unconscionable and illegal,” and said in a statement: “Today’s announcement isn’t about work. It is about taking away health insurance from low-income people.”
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Before looking at the general idea of welfare work requirements, we should first look at two things: 1. What exactly is Medicaid? 2. What exactly is the Trump administration’s new policy?
Medicaid is government-funded health care for poor Americans of any age and people with certain disabilities. It is the third-largest federal domestic program (after Social Security and Medicare) and the primary source of health-insurance coverage for low-income populations and nursing-home long-term care. Medicaid is a…