Here We Go Again: Another Bill to Slash Medicaid Funding in Congress
The leadership in the U.S. Congress is at it again. This week leading conservative organizations and Republican leadership will introduce a new version of their ACA repeal bill, which we expect to closely resemble last summer’s Graham-Cassidy bill. (As a reminder, here’s a good summary of what that plan entailed.) While we don’t expect this legislation to go anywhere in the near term, we take this as an effort to put repeal at the top of the agenda for next year, circumstances permitting. This is also another attack on the ACA following close on the heels of President Trump's Administration’s decision not to defend the Texas lawsuit. President Trump has signaled his support by putting the old Graham-Cassidy bill into his 2019 proposed federal budget.
According to the national Center on Budget and Policy, like the other repeal bills that Congress considered and rejected last year, the new bill is very likely to eliminate the ACA’s expansion of Medicaid to low-income adults; make individual market coverage unaffordable for many moderate-income consumers; cap and cut federal Medicaid funding for seniors, people with disabilities, and families with children; roll back nationwide protections for people with pre-existing conditions; and cause millions of people to lose coverage. A new version of Cassidy-Graham would likely leave even more Americans uninsured, because it would likely provide even less federal funding for health coverage than the earlier bill. When a plan is released, we will pass along analyses and other relevant materials.