Joan McCarter Daily Kos Friday April 19, 2019 · 8:00 PM EDT
The Congressional Budget Office released what would have been a bombshell report Thursday, had not the Mueller report eclipsed it. According to that report, there are 1.4 million more uninsured people now than in 2016, the last year of President Obama’s second term.
It estimates that there are now 28.9 million uninsured people in the U.S., up from 27.5 million in 2016. The report attributes much of that increase to the loss of coverage through Medicaid, where the Trump administration has made it much more difficult in many states to enroll and maintain coverage thanks to new rules like work requirements.
Another portion of those now uninsured might have moved out of exchange coverage and into the junk insurance plans the Trump administration has made more available. Those are not included in CBO’s counts, because those plans don’t meet CBO’s definition of coverage, which is “plans that must comply with the regulations governing the nongroup market as well as coverage that is exempt from some of the regulations but that nonetheless provides comprehensive major medical coverage.”
CBO isn’t the only tracker that’s found this loss of coverage. Its results correspond with an increase in the uninsured population tracked by Gallup. In January, it measured the highest rate of uninsurance in four years of collecting data. Gallup’s numbers are higher than CBO’s, but together they define a trend. We’re moving backward under Trump, in so many ways.