Let’s Cut the Crap: Trumpcare Cuts Medicaid Spending a Ton

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Every tedious old argument in the world is being regurgitated lately in service of the final, desperate defense of the Republican health care bill. The latest hotness is the old “we’re not cutting, we’re just slowing the rate of growth” argument for Medicaid. So let’s make this easy. Here’s the basic chart of federal Medicaid spending since 2000:

Sure enough, spending continues to rise under BCRA. But even a high school freshman knows that you have to adjust for inflation in any time series like this. Here’s the chart for real spending:

There’s a reason this is called real spending. As you can see, Medicaid spending isn’t “slowing down,” it’s being cut. Spending in 2026 is 18 percent lower than spending in 2017. And here’s the result:

The CBO estimates that the reduced spending will result in 15 million fewer people receiving Medicaid. Unsurprisingly, that’s a reduction of about 18 percent. It’s pretty simple.

NOTE: Historical Medicaid spending from CMS here (NHE Table 3). CBO spending projection here (page 13). CPI-M here. I used a conservative 3 percent as the CPI-M over the next decade—a bit lower than the average over the past decade. CBO Medicaid enrollment projection here (page 17).

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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