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Sunday, March 24, 2019

New national polling from Public Policy Polling conducted for the organization Protect Our Care shows overwhelming voter rejection of the cuts to Medicare and Medicaid in the budget the Trump administration released this week, once more elevating health care to a key issue for the 2020 campaign, and creating a major headache for Republicans.

The survey found that 60 percent of voters are opposed to Trump’s proposed Medicaid cuts; 72 percent say they oppose the proposed Medicare cuts; and 50 percent say they’re less likely to vote for him because of these proposed cuts. That includes 54 percent who consider themselves independents. When the question about Trump’s proposed budget cuts was prefaced by the statement “President Trump is proposing these cuts to Medicare and Medicaid after his tax plan gave hundreds of billions of dollars in new tax breaks for big corporations, including health insurance companies and drug companies,” the number that say they are less likely to support him jumps to 54 percent. That includes 57 percent of voters over age 65 and 51 percent of independents.

The proposed budget would cut $780 billion from Medicaid over the next 10 years and reduce the growth of the program by $1.4 trillion. It would cut $846 billion from Medicare. The administration argues it’s just cutting waste, fraud, and abuse in Medicare (it doesn’t bother to justify destroying Medicaid), ignoring the fact that cuts that deep to providers in Medicare will rebound onto patients.

White House budgets are never binding, but they’re a reflection of the values and priorities of the president. Boy, is this budget a reflection of Trump—one that Democrats are going to hang around the neck of every Republican between now and November 3, 2020.

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