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Like Other ACA Repeal Bills, Cassidy-Graham Would Cap and Deeply Cut Medicaid

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:20:06 +0000

Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham’s bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would deeply cut Medicaid by ending the ACA’s Medicaid expansion and converting the rest of Medicaid to a per capita cap.

Cassidy-Graham’s Restrictions on Provider Taxes Threaten State Medicaid Programs

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 14:25:19 +0000

Like the bill to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that the Senate rejected in July, the bill from Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham radically restructures Medicaid financing by converting federal funding to a per capita cap starting in 2020. But Cassidy-Graham actually goes further than the prior repeal bill by entirely repealing the ACA’s Medicaid expansion in 2020.

Medicaid Cuts in Cassidy-Graham Plan Would Reduce Access to Home- and Community-Based Services

Thu, 21 Sep 2017 13:57:44 +0000

Home- and community-based services that states fund through Medicaid would be especially vulnerable to deep cuts.

Senate’s Cassidy-Graham Focus Jeopardizing Health Coverage for Millions of Children

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 17:13:08 +0000

Senate Republicans’ efforts to pass the Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal bill from Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham are derailing bipartisan efforts to extend federal funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

Like Prior Repeal Bills, Cassidy-Graham Puts Coverage for American Indians, Alaska Natives at Risk

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 16:54:39 +0000

American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs) benefit greatly from the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) coverage expansions, with 290,000 AI/ANs now enrolled in Medicaid, as we’ve explained. The ACA repeal bill from Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham includes two provisions that purport to help AI/ANs, but the bill’s overall changes to Medicaid would ultimately mean less health coverage for that group, not more.

Cassidy-Graham’s Dramatic Funding Cliff Not Required by Budget Rules and Would Have Lasting, Negative Impact

Wed, 20 Sep 2017 14:17:15 +0000

There are no procedural barriers to making the block grant in Cassidy-Graham permanent.

Cassidy-Graham Would End Medicaid Expansion in 2020, Leave Millions of Low-Income Adults Uninsured

Tue, 19 Sep 2017 17:40:28 +0000

The plan from Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) includes even deeper cuts to Medicaid than prior Republican repeal legislation. Like the previous legislation, the bill would cap and cut federal funds for all of Medicaid, leading to large and growing cuts in benefits, eligibility, and provider rates.

Commission Urges Strengthening Evidence-Building Capacity, Yet House Considers Cutting Proven Low-Income Programs

Tue, 19 Sep 2017 17:33:16 +0000

A congressionally mandated commission has outlined ways that public agencies can help researchers access more government data and hence contribute to more effective public policy — just as Congress is considering deep cuts to economic security programs that, much evidence finds, are effective in helping struggling Americans.

Commentary: Rushed Senate Consideration of Cassidy-Graham Would Be Designed to Hide Bill’s Severe Flaws

Mon, 18 Sep 2017 19:59:50 +0000

Congressional Republicans are making a last-ditch effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) through their latest plan, from Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham.

Cassidy, Graham State Estimates Irrelevant to Assessing Their Health Bill’s Effects

Mon, 18 Sep 2017 14:23:04 +0000

These estimates do not compare states’ funding under the proposal to what states would receive under current law, the relevant comparison.

Trump, House Republican Cuts to SSI Would Harm Children With Disabilities

Fri, 15 Sep 2017 20:14:41 +0000

SSI is the only federal income support targeted to families caring for children with disabilities and reaches only the lowest-income and most severely impaired children.

In Case You Missed It . . .

Fri, 15 Sep 2017 19:14:06 +0000

This week at CBPP, we focused on health, poverty and inequality, the federal budget and taxes, the economy, housing, family income support, and food assistance.

Don’t Undermine Economic Progress of 2016

Fri, 15 Sep 2017 18:09:21 +0000

The economy has fueled income gains across the states, yet Congress is considering proposals that would undermine them. As we reported Tuesday, incomes rose nationally more from 2014 to 2016 than in any other two-year period in five decades. Now, according to yesterday’s release of new American Community Survey data, we know that the gains were widespread. In fact:

Cassidy-Graham Plan’s Damaging Cuts to Health Care Funding Would Grow Dramatically in 2027

Fri, 15 Sep 2017 17:31:02 +0000

In 2027 alone, the bill would cut federal health care funding by $299 billion relative to current law, with the cuts affecting all states.

Cruz Calls for Deficit-Increasing Tax Cuts — Even Worse Than Bush’s

Fri, 15 Sep 2017 14:47:16 +0000

Congress should “dispense [with] the handcuffs of revenue neutrality and pass a real tax cut,” Senator Ted Cruz said this week.

Cassidy-Graham’s Waiver Authority Would Gut Protections for People with Pre-Existing Conditions

Fri, 15 Sep 2017 14:28:32 +0000

The revised Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal plan from Senators Bill Cassidy and Lindsey Graham, which is also backed by Senators Dean Heller and Ron Johnson, would give states broad waiver authority to eliminate the ACA’s core protections for people with pre-existing health conditions.

Full Employment for the Young, Too

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 21:01:22 +0000

Evidence-based public investment in employment opportunities for youth and young adults could provide a powerful tool for boosting incomes.

Like Other ACA Repeal Bills, Cassidy-Graham Plan Would Add Millions to Uninsured, Destabilize Individual Market

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 18:58:54 +0000

The bill would cause many millions of people to lose coverage, radically restructure and deeply cut Medicaid, and increase out-of-pocket costs for individual market consumers.

Unpaid-for Tax Cuts for Wealthy Even Less Defensible Now Than in Bush Era

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 17:52:30 +0000

Senate Budget Committee Republicans drafting a 2018 budget resolution are reportedly considering letting the Senate use the fast-track “reconciliation” process to pass a tax bill that loses revenue and increases deficits.

Roundup: CBPP’s Analyses of New Census Figures

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 16:32:47 +0000

The Census Bureau on September 12 released figures on health coverage, poverty, and median income in 2016. We’ve collected our analyses to date of the new data here.

How Tax Reform Can Raise Working-Class Incomes

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 16:26:43 +0000

Federal policies — including tax reform — should help those who need it most.

Harmful Provisions Jeopardize Extension of Effective Home Visiting Programs

Wed, 13 Sep 2017 14:34:35 +0000

A nationwide federal-state partnership that supports family- and child-related home visiting programs is slated to expire October 1, threatening a host of programs that strengthen high-risk families and save money over the long run.

Census Data Show Robust Progress Across the Board in 2016 in Income, Poverty, and Health Coverage

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 21:14:12 +0000

Two consecutive years of progress on all three measures Is unprecedented.

Census Says Four Programs — Which House Eyes for Cuts — Keep Millions From Poverty

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 21:10:52 +0000

As the House prepares to vote on a budget plan to cut safety net programs — including tax credits for low- and moderate-income working families and food assistance, and almost inevitable cuts in housing assistance — the Census Bureau today released new figures showing that these programs kept millions of people out of poverty in 2016.

Aron-Dine on Strengthening Health Insurance Markets, Improving Coverage and Costs

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 17:41:51 +0000

In testimony today before the Senate Finance Committee, CBPP Senior Fellow and Senior Counselor Aviva Aron-Dine stressed that policymakers can and should strengthen health insurance markets in the near term and continue expanding coverage and making health care better and more affordable over the longer term.

Census Data: States Not Expanding Medicaid Lag Further on Health Coverage

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 17:00:35 +0000

States that have adopted the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) Medicaid expansion had a much lower uninsured rate in 2016 than states that haven’t, and the gap continues to widen, new Census data show.

Some 6.5 percent of the people in the 31 states (including the District of Columbia) that expanded Medicaid by January 2016 lacked health insurance that year, compared with 11.7 percent in the 20 non-expansion states, according to the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey. (Since January 2016, Louisiana has expanded Medicaid.)

Share and Number of People Without Health Insurance Fall to Historic Low

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 16:56:17 +0000

The share of Americans without health insurance fell to an historic low in 2016, the Census Bureau’s new Current Population Survey (CPS) data show. In 2016, the third full year that the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) major coverage expansions were implemented, the large coverage gains that the ACA has generated continued to grow. Some 8.8 percent of people lacked insurance in 2016, down from its 2015 rate of 9.1 percent and down more than one-third from the 2013 rate of 13.3 percent.

State-by-State: Costly Estate Tax Repeal Benefits Only Few Wealthiest Estates

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 15:36:14 +0000

With Republican leaders calling for repealing the federal estate tax in the upcoming tax debate, we’ve updated our estimates showing that the tax affects very few estates in each state and that its repeal would provide windfall tax cuts to the wealthiest heirs (see table).

Greenstein: Census Data Show Largest Two-Year Income Gain in Five Decades, Progress Against Poverty in 2016

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 15:29:53 +0000

Today’s Census data bring good news on income, poverty, and health coverage. 

Health Care: Issues Impacting Cost and Coverage

Tue, 12 Sep 2017 14:05:15 +0000

Commentary: Trump Administration Should Reinstate Promising Housing Voucher Initiative

Mon, 11 Sep 2017 14:43:14 +0000

The Trump Administration’s suspension of a 2016 regulatory provision governing the Housing Choice Voucher program will leave in place a flawed policy that reinforces segregation.

House Budget Committee Proposal to Verify Incomes of All EITC Filers Would Delay Refunds, Raise Administrative Costs, and Divert IRS Resources

Mon, 11 Sep 2017 14:21:37 +0000

The change would be a massive undertaking that almost certainly would require months of work and would interfere with the IRS’ ability to perform other functions.

In Case You Missed It . . .

Fri, 08 Sep 2017 18:45:31 +0000

This week at CBPP, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, health care, housing, poverty and inequality, and food assistance.

Food Insecurity Still Above Pre-Recession Levels

Fri, 08 Sep 2017 16:03:08 +0000

Some 12.3 percent of households (15.6 million) were food insecure at some point during 2016, meaning household members struggled to afford enough food for an active, healthy life year-round, the latest annual Agriculture Department report shows. While this figure is below its height of 14.9 percent in 2011, it’s virtually unchanged from its 2015 level of 12.7 percent — and remains above levels before the Great Recession of 2007-09.

Tax Plans Must Not Lose Revenue and Should Focus on Raising Working-Class Incomes

Fri, 08 Sep 2017 15:40:08 +0000

Congress should require that a tax bill be “revenue-neutral,” meaning that the bill must fully offset the cost of any tax cuts by closing tax loopholes.

What to Look for in Next Week’s Census Figures on Poverty, Income, and Health Insurance

Thu, 07 Sep 2017 17:49:24 +0000

Four points are worth noting in advance of the release.

Trump Administration Blocks Housing Voucher Policy That Would Expand Opportunity and Reduce Costs

Thu, 07 Sep 2017 15:49:29 +0000

The suspended provision would have required state and local housing agencies in 23 metropolitan areas to adopt a promising policy that ties voucher subsidies to market rents in a given neighborhood rather than an entire metropolitan area.

Federal Spending and Revenue Needs Will Grow

Wed, 06 Sep 2017 17:37:07 +0000

Spending and revenues will have to grow significantly as a share of the economy in coming years just to enable the federal government to continue carrying out existing functions that the public widely supports, our new analysis concludes. As policymakers consider tax reform this fall, ensuring adequate revenues to fund national needs should be a primary consideration.

House GOP Appropriations Plan Doesn’t Meet National Needs

Wed, 06 Sep 2017 14:26:51 +0000

The House is scheduled this week to take the next step to implement the Republican majority’s 2018 appropriations plan, which pairs a $70 billion increase above the 2017 level for defense with an $8 billion cut to non-defense programs. That unbalanced plan would fall far short of meeting national needs, as we detailed in a recent paper.

Federal Spending and Revenues Will Need to Grow in Coming Years, Not Shrink

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 21:13:37 +0000

Federal spending and taxes will have to grow significantly as a share of the economy in the coming decades.  This is not a statement of political values; it’s a reflection of basic realities.

In Case You Missed It…

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 17:49:42 +0000

This week at CBPP, we focused on the federal budget and taxes, health care, food assistance, the economy, and family income support.

Commentary: Congress’ Packed Fall Agenda Offers Opportunities for Bipartisan Progress

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 17:43:36 +0000

Republican House and Senate leaders need to decide whether to seek reasonable, bipartisan solutions or to push highly partisan proposals.

How Would the House Budget Plan Reduce Deficits?

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 17:34:32 +0000

This analysis examines the main ways that the ten-year budget plan approved by the House Budget Committee in July would affect the deficit.

Trump Administration Slashing Funding for Marketplace Enrollment Assistance and Outreach

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 17:34:28 +0000

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) decision to drastically cut funding for consumer outreach and assistance for enrolling in the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) health insurance marketplaces comes as a shock to the hundreds of community- and state-based organizations that were counting on CMS finalizing its awards to these organizations today. But it will also mean that fewer people will take advantage of available coverage and financial assistance.

5 Key Points About the Budget Likely Before the House This Month

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 17:18:27 +0000

Returning from its summer recess, Congress now faces the key challenge of designing a budget plan for fiscal year 2018 and beyond. Here are five key points — and links to selected CBPP analyses — about the plan that the House Budget Committee approved in July and the full House will likely consider this month. It would:

SNAP Supports Workers in Every State

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 14:23:51 +0000

This Labor Day, millions of workers across the country are better able to feed their families thanks to the support of SNAP (formerly food stamps).

States Will Begin Exhausting Federal CHIP Funds by December — Unless Trump and Congress Act

Fri, 01 Sep 2017 14:19:28 +0000

The Senate Finance Committee will hold a hearing Thursday on extending funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and for good reason: no additional CHIP funding is available for fiscal year 2018, which starts October 1. That places at severe risk a program that provides health coverage for nearly 9 million children.

Ohio TANF Waiver Denial Continues Trump Administration’s Attack on Work Programs

Thu, 31 Aug 2017 20:29:52 +0000

The Trump Administration has denied Ohio’s request for a Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program waiver that would have helped the state integrate workforce services that now vary by program and provided TANF recipients with greater access to education and training opportunities to prepare them for better jobs. Yesterday’s denial of the state’s waiver accompanied a notice to states that rescinded an Obama Administration notice that states could request waivers to improve their TANF work programs.

USDA Acts Quickly to Get Food to Hurricane Harvey-Affected Families

Thu, 31 Aug 2017 16:07:55 +0000

Government and voluntary organizations are working quickly to help families affected by Hurricane Harvey, including by performing the critical task of ensuring that people can get enough to eat now and in the weeks ahead. Poor families that lost food due to flooding and power outages can ill afford to replace it. And, for those that will be out of their homes for some time, feeding their families without money or cooking facilities can seem like an insurmountable problem. As in prior disasters, the U.S.