Trump administration weighs letting states drug test people who receive food assistance

The Trump administration is considering a plan that would allow states to require Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) — formerly known as food stamps — recipients to undergo drug testing in order to receive benefits, the Associated Press reported Wednesday.

According the AP, the proposal would apply mostly to recipients who are able-bodied without dependents and applying to some specialized jobs. It’s a tactic many conservatives have advocated for in ...

In just 24 hours, Scott Pruitt’s scandals blew up into an ethics crisis

From pipeline deals and GOP fundraisers to private jets and pay raises, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt’s series of scandals has escalated in the past 24 hours.

Pruitt is not a man untouched by scandal. Since coming to the EPA in February of 2017, he has made headlines for expensive first-class travel, secretive private phone booths, and a close relationship with the industries he is charged to regulate.

And on Monday — the same da...

Surprise! The Trump administration just admitted it has to follow Obamacare

In an unexpected development, the Department of Health and Human Services sent a letter to Idaho Gov. Butch Otter (R) on Thursday reluctantly conceding that Obamacare “remains the law and we have a duty to enforce and uphold the law.”

The letter, from Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma, informs Idaho that insurers will not be allowed to sell illegal plans within that state which threatened to destabilize Idaho’s insurance markets...

How Trump’s budget would cut the safety net for the poorest Americans

Trump’s vision for the budget adds to the deficit while cutting domestic programs such as food stamps that benefit people in need

Donald Trump’s budget proposal, unveiled on Monday, revived his calls for big cuts to domestic programs that benefit the poor and middle class, such as food stamps, as well as plans to entirely eliminate several arts and earth sciences funding.

The president, who is looking for large increases in military spending, is also proposing work requirements...

The Trump administration wants to allow states to impose lifetime coverage limits on Medicaid

The Trump administration is taking aim at Medicaid yet again, specifically with lifetime coverage limits, according to a McClatchy report Monday evening.

Just weeks after unveiling guidance that will allow states to impose Medicaid work requirements, Trump’s Health and Human Services agency is reportedly attempting to limit the number of months adults have access to the safety net program. The cap, if approved, would be the first of its kind in Medicaid’s history.

Doctors say new Medicaid rules ‘like asking people to work with an anchor on their back’

Administration’s policy allows states to impose work requirements for people on Medicaid, meaning sick or injured Americans ‘have to go to work, no matter what’

Dr Gary Leroy’s patients are “salt of the earth”: inner-city people working in Dayton, Ohio as dishwashers, car mechanics and patient care assistants.

Related: Medicaid: Trump opens door for states to take away coverage from out-of-work Americans

Continue reading...

Bit by bit, Trump is taking apart the New Deal’s glorious legacy | Heather Richardson

With huge tax cuts projected to create a $1.5tn deficit, cuts to social security and Medicare will surely follow

Since January, there have been frightening signs that America is becoming an oligarchy overseen by a dictator. From the first, Donald Trump has followed an authoritarian playbook, beginning with his rejection of objective reality. Forced early on to defend the assertion that the crowd at Trump’s inauguration was the biggest ever witnessed, presidential spokesperson Kellyanne Con...

Some Missouri HIV-positive patients to lose health coverage as assault on Obamacare continues

Some HIV-positive patients in Missouri will lose critical health coverage in 2018, thanks to high costs and little marketplace competition. Many of the affected individuals live in rural areas, where access to health care is already limited.  

According to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, about 95 patients in 51 counties will lose coverage starting January 1. The state has begun notifying the patients of this change, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

<...

White House can continue withholding health subsidies, judge rules

States had called for federal government to continue making payments as broader case over subsidies makes its way through courts

A US judge has ruled that the government does not have to immediately resume paying Affordable Care Act healthcare subsidies that Donald Trump cut off.

Eighteen state attorneys general, led by the California Democrat Xavier Becerra, argued the monthly payments were required under Barack Obama’s healthcare law and cutting them off would harm consumers.

Continue reading...