On May 23, 2017, President Trump presented his proposed 2018 budget to Congress. The budget would make deep cuts to Medicaid, the needs-based health care program for poor disabled and elderly Americans. The budget builds on the cuts to Medicaid make by the “American Health Care Act” which passed the House of Representatives but which has yet to pass the Senate. The AHCA would cut Medicaid by $839 billion. Trump’s proposed 2018 budget would cut another $610 billion from Medicaid. Together, they would cut Medicaid spending by nearly one-half over ten years.
Much of the way the cuts are to be made is by turning the spending into block grants to the states or per capita caps for spending. The states would be given broad discretion in how to implement the programs with reduced funding. Of course, it is way too soon to know how these cuts might be implemented, if they happen. But, the cuts could vary dramatically by state.
Here is a link to more information about the budget proposal.
The AHCA and this budget proposal are far from certain of passage. David Stockman, the budget director under President Reagan said, “There’s not a snowball’s chance that most of this deep deficit reduction will even be considered in a serious way.” Here is a link to more on the budget proposal and its prospects from the New York Times.
Doubts surround any budget proposal. However, with investigations underway in both the House and the Senate and a Special Counsel recently appointed, the prospects of boldness in the legislative branch on this budget seem dim.
Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M.
Director of Education
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (858) 453-2128