Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price would have you believe the same Trumpcare bill that would strip Medicaid coverage from 15 million Americans by 2026 somehow isn’t a cut to Medicaid.
Price made that claim in an exceedingly dishonest tweet posted Thursday afternoon.
— Tom Price, M.D. (@SecPriceMD) July 6, 2017
Scale issues aside — note that the the Y axis in the graph abruptly jumps from 0 to 375 — what Price isn’t telling you is that Trumpcare represents a massive Medicaid cut relative to current law. If Trumpcare becomes law, Medicaid funding would be slashed by about $160 billion in 2026, resulting in massive coverage losses, according to a Vox analysis.
Price’s tweet embodies a talking point White House officials have been using for weeks now. In addition to Trump, Kellyanne Conway and President Trump have made the same flawed argument.
Democrats purposely misstated Medicaid under new Senate bill – actually goes up. pic.twitter.com/necCt4K6UH
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 28, 2017
This isn’t the first time Trump administration officials and Trumpcare-supporting Republicans have mangled the facts on Twitter while making a case for a tax cut for the wealthy masquerading as a health care bill. Late last month, Press Secretary Sean Spicer tweeted that uninsured Americans “need relief” and suggested Trumpcare is the solution, despite the fact that the bill would nearly double the number of people without insurance.
Trumpcare supporters are also framing the devastating impact the bill would have as liberating low-income people from health insurance they don’t want or need. Earlier Thursday, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) echoed a talking point that’s making the rounds among Republicans — coverage losses are a matter of choice.
Not lose, choose. Apparently you believe freedom is optional https://t.co/WIUJz2Mxv7
— JohnCornyn (@JohnCornyn) July 6, 2017
In fact, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) concluded that Trumpcare’s massive cuts to Medicaid coupled with a reduction in federal subsidies and allowing insurance companies to sell plans that cover less would produce a state of affairs where “few low-income people would purchase any plan.”