Trump Tweeted 5 Times That He Would ‘Never Cut Medicaid’

Trump Tweeted 5 Times That He Would ‘Never Cut Medicaid’

Donald Trump established himself as the Republican front-runner in the 2016 primary election, in part by differentiating himself from the other representatives with promises to drain the swamp and preserve funding to Medicaid.

As early as June 2014, Donald Trump tweeted that there should be no cuts to Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid. Opponents and advocates of the programs have gone back and forth crunching the numbers, some concluding with criticisms of the services’ costliness. Trump proposed that the solution is to “make the U.S.A rich again” in order to afford such programs.

With most Americans supporting the continuation and expansion of Medicaid, Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee followed Trump’s suit, promising protections to Social Security and Medicare as well. In a May 2015 tweet, Trump prided himself as the first GOP candidate to state that there would be no cuts to these programs under his presidency. He went as far as to say that Huckabee “copied” him, and that Trump himself is the only candidate to potentially keep his word.

Minutes later, Trump added in a follow up tweet that although Huckabee is “a nice guy,” he is not as capable as Trump when it comes to raking in the necessary funds. Continually reinforcing his position, Trump tweeted about Medicare and Medicaid again in October 2015. He reoccurringly made cases against other Republicans based on their opinions and capabilities regarding Medicare. Trump called Gov. John Kasich “weak” and “clueless” on the subject while he pointed out that Ben Carson wanted to abolish the programs.

In July 2015, Trump shared a picture of himself saluting a military personell, trailing the patriotic image with his slogan, “Make America Great Again.” Maintaining funding for Social Security and Medicare proved to be an integral part of his vision of a “robust economy” and “rebuilt nation” under his presidency. Fast-forward to May 2017, and Trump’s last notable tweet regarding Medicaid proclaimed that “Obamacare is dead – the Republicans will do much better!”

While Medicaid is not yet dead, the proposed Senate health care bill intends to kill it in order to finance tax cuts for the wealthy. Calling Medicare “Obamacare” – of which Medicaid is the cornerstone – began as a tactic to draw upon distaste for Obama so that those who disliked him would turn away from this program. This method was so effective that some opponents of Obamacare claim to support the Affordable Care Act, not realizing that Obamacare and the ACA are synonymous.

This might be a startling realization considering the drastic effects that changes to Medicaid will have upon its tens of millions of beneficiaries. The Senate healthcare bill details the cutting of reimbursement rates to states planning to expand on Medicaid, withdrawing federal support and deterring new enrollees. Medicaid is currently an open-ended, joint responsibility between the federal and state government, but with the addition of spending caps based on the average per capita cost in any one of its five demographic categories, the federal contribution would be limited to a specified growth rate in which all enrollees are equally covered, regardless of the actual increase of Medicaid spending in a state, of varying individual healthcare costs, and of the number of Medicaid enrollees. All in all, the new Senate healthcare bill will stagnate the available money per patient at a rate slower than the growing costs of medical coverage.

Protecting Medicaid was once a rallying battle cry for Trump in order to elevate his voter-appeal over other Republicans in the eyes of the lower class. Since, the goal has been to create an elitist Republican front by ending Medicaid, despite his contradicting campaign promises.