The strangulation of Obamacare | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The strangulation of Obamacare

Posted By on Tue, Jun 20, 2017 at 7:32 AM

_nkw7095_800.jpg

Gov. Asa Hutchinson's
effort to triangulate health care is better viewed as a slow strangulation, as illustrated today by health industry comments on his plan to curb the Arkansas Medicaid expansion.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette today reported on the outpouring of criticism from health groups on the Hutchinson plan to have only the poorest qualify for Medicaid expansion and to add work requirements and costs that will drive still more out of coverage. The groups illustrate that the promise of federal tax credits in the subsidized marketplace will somehow be an equal substitute is a sham.

The critics won't deter Hutchinson, the Republican legislature or the Trump administration agency that will approve any suggestions to restrict benefits for poor people, even working poor. Hutchinson is trying to hang onto the boon of federal money while also serving the Republican desire to punish the poor. So he'll keep Medicaid expansion money (a tremendous aid to his tax-cutting) while showing he can be heartless, too.

Bottom line: Tens of thousands fewer people will be covered. Hospitals will again experience huge and possibly calamitous unreimbursed expenses. Insurance premiums will rise. Sick people, unable to work, will die. This also seems likely to begin a downward spiral. If the state continues to insist on cost-cutting, still more ways to restrict the poor will be devised, with an increase in the same consequences.

Hutchinson will be re-elected governor in 2018 before the first canaries in this toxic coal mine of health care die. And the reductions will come gradually, first to the most disenfranchised, an invisible group without credit card-toting lobbyists to plead their case.

To coin a phrase: Sad!

What will be sadder still is if the secret health care bill being drafted in the U.S. Senate is jammed into law without debate and produces an even bigger reduction in the money Arkansas has on hand.

Tags: , , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments (22)

Showing 1-22 of 22

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-22 of 22

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • ASU announces $29 million athletic project backed by private booster foundation

    The Arkansas State University Board of Trustees today approved a ground lease with the Red Wolves Foundation which will take the responsibility for building $29. million worth of improvements to the football stadium.
    • Nov 20, 2017
  • Monday's open line

    Here's the Monday open line and today's news roundup
    • Nov 20, 2017
  • Protest set on tax legislation

    A coalition of groups will demonstrate at 12:15 p.m. Tuesday in front of the state Human Services headquarters at Seventh and Main to show displeasure with the Senate tax legislation.
    • Nov 20, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Judge anticipates punishment of lawyers in Fort Smith class action case

    Federal Judge P.K. Holmes of Fort Smith issued a 32-page ruling yesterday indicating he contemplates punishment of 16 lawyers who moved a class action lawsuit against an insurance company out of his court to a state court in Polk County after a settlement had been worked out.
    • Apr 15, 2016
  • UPDATE: Hutchinson moves to cover himself on cut to War Memorial Stadium

    Gov. Asa Hutchinson apparently felt the burn from KARK's exclusive Tuesday night on his plans to cut state support of War Memorial Stadium in half beginning July 1, 2018. He has a so-far secret plan to make the stadium self-sustaining. We bet that doesn't include state support.
    • Oct 20, 2016
  • LR speakers blast state board for double standard

    A series of speakers, beginning with Sen. Joyce Elliott, denounced what they saw as a hidden agenda favoring charter schools at the state Department of Education and asked the state Board of Education for return of local control.
    • May 12, 2016

Most Shared

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Monday's open line

    • I personally find the whole "Personhood for fetuses" absolutely absurd. How stupid to insert it…

    • on November 20, 2017
  • Re: Vox pop: Mixed response to Capitol monument proposals

    • Here is a good news for those interested. There is away you can earn money…

    • on November 20, 2017
  • Re: Protest set on tax legislation

    • I am sorry about the debit to your grandchildren Razor, but if the GOP majority…

    • on November 20, 2017

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation