Voxdotcom: Robert Greenstein, the founder and president of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and Washington’s leading advocate for poor and low-income Americans, says. “This is by far the gravest threat to the safety net, and to low-income people, that I’ve seen in my close to half a century of working on these issues.”
The 1996 welfare reform law effectively rendered welfare dead, according to sociologists of poverty, particularlyin the eyes of the extreme poor, who ceased to see it as a program that can help them at all. If Ryan’s policies are enacted, that same fate could await food and medical assistance for the poor.
Larry Levitt, a senior vice president at the Kaiser Family Foundation and health reform expert, says the repeal bill Congress is likely to take up would deny 22 million people insurance and, even if accompanied with a promise of a replacement bill later on … could rather quickly throw the entire insurance market into disarray. “With a highly uncertain future, I would expect insurers to exit the ACA marketplaces and the individual market in droves. The individual insurance market would be in chaos. This would affect not only low-income people receiving ACA subsidies, but also people like the self-employed, farmers, and small-business owners buying their own insurance.”
Levitt explained: “Would people at least buy something, even if it’s skimpy, since they’d otherwise be forgoing the tax credit? Or would many decide that the skimpy insurance is so lousy it’s not worth the trouble? We don’t know for sure how people would respond. It is a safe bet, though, that the insurance people would get would cover less than what they get under the ACA.”
As I've mentioned in a previous post, voters will have invested so much of themselves in Trump or their political party, that they'll do everything they can do deny its failures. And there will be many Americans who will be profoundly harmed:
One of the biggest policy areas where Trump and Ryan are in agreement is Medicaid block granting. They want to cut the program’s budget by about a third and hand the remaining money back to the states. Ari Ne’eman, a former member of Obama’s National Council on Disability, writes, “Under a block grant, disabled Americans might effectively lack any rights to support services under federal law.”
The human toll here could be immense. The Urban Institute's analysis of the fiscal year 2013 House budget — one prepared by Ryan and closely resembling subsequent budgets — found that its cuts and block granting would kick 14 million to 20 million people off the Medicaid rolls. That’s in addition to the 20 million who’d lose coverage through ACA repeal.
And with the sharp political divide in place now, bringing back any of these hard fought for policies would be impossible. Then what?
A former liberal radio talk host who likes to ask the “follow-up question” at Democurmudgeon.blogspot.com