Trump Administration’s push for Medicaid block grants divides lawmakers

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WASHINGTON- Congresswomen Debbie Dingell and Jan Schakowsky are blasting the Trump Administrations proposed changes to Medicaid.

“The administration is gutting Medicaid and allowing states to cut benefits,” said Schakowsky, a Democrat from Illinois.

The Trump Administration’ plans to give states a one-time chunk of money for Medicaid funding called a block grant.

Democrats say the plan will cap Medicaid spending and strip millions of vulnerable Americans of their health care.

“A loss of coverage for seniors, the disabled and our children. We need to protect Medicaid, not cut it,” said Dingell, a Democrat from Michigan.

With nearly unanimous support, Democrats passed a resolution condemning the administration decision. But most Republicans such as Paul Mitchell called the non-binding vote a publicity stunt.

“This is a media opportunity,” said Mitchell from Michigan. “Let me at this point express my opinion exercise my First Amendment rights but simply saying . . .”  And with that, Mitchell ripped the paper into pieces.

Georgia Republican Buddy Carter said block grants are the right solution because they give states the flexibility they need to run the program successfully.

“States will be able to take that money and be able to treat patients and then share in savings,” said Carter.

In a recent Washington Post editorial, Seema Verma who oversees the Medicaid program accused Democrats of fear mongering, emphasizing the block grants are optional and not forced on states.

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