Quick Takes: Medicaid Comes of Age

* A silver lining to the ugly cloud we witnessed in the attempt to repeal Obamacare is that – due in part to it’s central role in the ACA – Medicaid came of age.

…over the past five decades, Medicaid has surpassed Medicare in the number of Americans it covers. It has grown gradually into a behemoth that provides for the medical needs of one in five Americans — 74 million people — starting for many in the womb, and for others, ending only when they go to their graves.

Medicaid, so central to the country’s health care system, also played a major, though far less appreciated, role in last week’s collapse of the Republican drive to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. While President Trump and others largely blamed the conservative Freedom Caucus for that failure, the objections of moderate Republicans to the deep cuts in Medicaid also helped doom the Republican bill…

Medicaid now provides medical care to four out of 10 American children. It covers the costs of nearly half of all births in the United States. It pays for the care for two-thirds of people in nursing homes. And it provides for 10 million children and adults with physical or mental disabilities. For states, it accounts for 60% of federal funding — meaning that cuts hurt not only poor and middle-class families caring for their children with autism or dying parents, but also bond ratings.

* The pattern remains the same. Whenever Trump feels threatened, he reverts to lie, distract and blame.

Steve Benen responds:

On the surface, little tantrums like these point to a shrinking president, lashing out with pitiful, almost child-like, responses to a serious international controversy. It’s easy to grow inured to the stream of nonsense, but having the sitting president of the United States call for a congressional investigation into his defeated opponent, for no credible reason, is alarming.

It’s also worth noting that Trump doesn’t appear to have any idea what he’s talking about: there was no “Bill & Hillary deal that allowed big Uranium to go to Russia.”

* Amidst all the talk about domestic policy and FBI investigations, the devastating air strike on West Mosul hasn’t received the kind of attention we should give to a tragedy like this:

Even though Iraqi civil defense workers are still sorting through the rubble, the March 17 U.S. airstrike in West Mosul, if confirmed, could potentially rank among one of the most devastating attacks on civilians by American forces in more than two decades.

Residents from the neighborhood where the strike occurred said that 137 civilians were killed, while Iraqi officials have said that upward of 80 people had been pulled from the rubble. Chris Woods, the director of the monitoring group Airwars.org, said the range of dead have been reported from 101 to 511, though the likely numbers are somewhere between 130 and 230.

* Kurtis Lee shines the spotlight on one of the most important drivers of the resistance: Indivisible.

What at first started with a small group of young progressives batting around ideas on how to move forward under a Trump administration has blossomed into a national movement, known as Indivisible. The mission centers on grass-roots advocacy targeting members of Congress inclined to work with the new administration and those who, in Indivisible’s view, don’t do enough to oppose it.

* Finally, it had been rumored that Donald Trump would throw out the first pitch at the Washington Nationals opening day game. But…

Charles Pierce seems to have a betting pool going.

Nancy LeTourneau

Nancy LeTourneau is a contributing writer for the Washington Monthly.