Perspectives: A New Front For An Old Obamacare War; How Tax Reform Tees Up Medicare Cuts
Opinion writers offer a range of thoughts and commentary on how the current GOP tax plan impacts health policy and entitlement programs, as well as other health policy topics.
The GOP Tax Cut Plan Opens A New Front In The War On Obamacare
Here we are again, talking about a Republican proposal that would rattle health insurance markets, increase overall premiums and leave millions without coverage ― all while freeing up money for tax cuts that would disproportionately benefit corporations and wealthy Americans. ... The GOP’s tax cut will end up costing somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.5 trillion, according to official government projections, and finding offsets that will get 50 votes has been difficult. Desperate to find a source of money that can work politically ― and, perhaps, to take a shot at Obamacare while they can ― Republicans have set their eyes on the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate. (Jonathan Cohn, 11/15)
It’s ‘Groundhog Day’ For Republicans And Health Care
Earlier this week, Senate Republicans, in a last-minute effort move to lower the cost of their $1.5 trillion tax cut plan added a truly poison pill to the legislation: repeal of Obamacare’s individual mandate. While the move would save more than $300 billion over 10 years — and thus allow the tax bill to meet budgetary requirements in the Senate — it will also cause 13 million Americans to lose health insurance and, according to the Congressional Budget Office, will increase health care premiums by an estimated 10 percent. (Michael Cohen, 11/16)
The Washington Post:
First, Republicans Want Tax Cuts. Next, They’ll Try Gutting Medicare And Social Security.
President Trump and congressional Republicans want Americans to think that their proposed tax legislation is all about increasing economic growth. That’s their stated goal. But the stealth goal of GOP tax cuts is to start down the path toward gutting the New Deal and the Great Society — and if tax cuts pass, they might get away with it. (Bruce Bartlett, 11/16)
Cleveland Plain Dealer:
Sick, Alone And Terrified Of Falling Into Destitution, Thanks To Congress' Proposed Tax And Health Care Cuts
With every paycheck for 46 years, ever since I became self-supporting at age 21, I have diligently and faithfully paid into Medicare, glad to rest in the security of anticipation that Medicare would indeed care for me in my old age. Well, old age has arrived, and what now? Even though I now willingly pay monthly Part B premiums, Congress is chopping away at the oak's roots. (Trudy E. Bell, 11/16)
The New York Times:
What States Can Learn From One Another On Health Care
We know that where you live matters: There are huge disparities in health and costs across the country. The uninsured rate in Texas is six times higher than in Massachusetts. You’re four times more likely to be readmitted to the hospital in Maryland or New Jersey than in Hawaii. One-third of low-income adults in Texas forgo medical care because of cost, but only 9 percent in Vermont do. Alaska spends twice as much on health care per person as Utah does. (Dhruv Khullar, 11/16)