Trump’s Latest Assault On The Affordable Care Act
A ‘cold-hearted decision’ that will ‘hurt people’
July 11, 2018
CLICK TO ENLARGE: Americans marching in the streets in 2009 demanding health care reform.
(NATIONAL) – Congressman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) says President Trump’s latest assault on the Affordable Care Act is nothing less than a, “cold-hearted decision that will only serve to hurt people.”
A Los Angeles Times piece puts that decision this way: “President Trump’s devoted Affordable Care Act saboteurs took another swipe at the program late Tuesday, slashing funds for outreach programs to a bare $10 million for 2019. Just two years ago, before Trump took office, the funding for the so-called Navigator program was $63 million. Last year, Trump cut that sum to $36 million, while also slashing the ACA’s marketing and advertising budget by 90%.”
The Times had a report out Monday saying this latest move is part of a Trump policy to damage the Affordable Care Act “by a thousand administrative cuts.”
“It’s the Republicans’ alternative to doing what they found to be impossible, which was repealing the law via an actual vote in Congress,” said the Times’ Tuesday report, which calls this latest Trump-GOP move an “entirely discreditable process that sends premiums higher in the individual market and actually drives up costs for the federal government while also burdening middle-class households that aren’t cushioned from the premium increases by federal subsidies.”
The “Navigators” in that Navigator program are individuals or organizations that are trained to help people understand the programs that are offered on the ACA exchanges. Their services are paid for by federal government.
According to the Times report, “Navigators say they find their services especially crucial in rural areas and among disadvantaged communities, including those who aren’t fully conversant in English.”
Earlier this month the Trump administration announced it would halt billions of dollars in annual payments required under the law to even out the cost to insurers whose customers need expensive medical services.
“In a rare Saturday afternoon announcement, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services said it will stop collecting and paying out money under the ACA’s “risk adjustment” program,” said the Washington Post. “Risk adjustment is one of three methods built into the 2010 health-care law to help insulate insurance companies from the ACA requirement that they accept all customers for the first time — healthy and sick — without charging more to those who need substantial care.”
The Trump Truth Tracker
By the way, in case you’re interested in just how much of what President Trump says is truthful these days, The Washington Post’s Fact Checker reviewed all the claims Trump made at his Montana rally last week and found that “76 percent of them were false or suspect,” according to a Post opinion piece by Dana Milbank having to do with Trump’s trip across the pond.
Milbank writes, “Therefore, assuming this proportion holds for all Trump utterances, the odds he is telling the truth are closer to the chance of drawing a spade at random from a 52-card deck.”