An analysis of the newest version the GOP’s Obamacare repeal bill, touted by Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Bill Cassidy (R-La.), reveals that the legislation would cut federal funding to states by $215 billion through 2026 and cut more than $4 trillion over a 20-year period.
The nonpartisan consulting firm Avalere Health conducted the study in which they found that by 2026, 34 states and D.C. would see funding shrinkage. Seven states would see decreases of more than $10 billion with 16 others experiencing slight increases. The hardest hit states will be those who expanded Medicaid under the current version of Obamacare.
“States would have broad flexibility to shape their markets but would have less funding to subsidize coverage for low- and middle-income individuals,” Caroline Pearson, senior vice president at Avalere, said in a statement.
The new legislation, named after Cassidy and Graham, is intended to redistribute funds from high spending states who expanded Medicaid, such as California, to those who rejected Medicaid, like Texas.
But they run into a roadblock by also punishing red states like Arizona and Alaska, which would lose $19 billion and $2 billion respectively as a result of the bill.
Sen. John McCain (R-Az.) and Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Ala.) were among the first to denounce and sink the last GOP effort to repeal Obamacare.
As the Senate sprints to whip the votes to bring the bill to the floor before Sept. 30–the time-period through which it retains its status as “reconciliatory,” and thus, only needs 51 votes to pass–McCain and Murkowski’s votes will become extremely important.
Both Sen Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) have said they will vote no on the bill, making the two aforementioned senators votes paramount to reach the 51 vote hashmark.
But it may be more difficult as more analyses from Avalere come out. The group concludes with the finding that eventually every state will lose out on funds. Block grant appropriations as constituted in the bill would end by 2026. So, by 2027, 39 states and D.C. would face funding cuts, with 18 states seeing reductions of greater than $10 billion. By 2036, every state would lose money, ranging from a $4 billion loss in South Dakota to $800 billion in California.
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