May 1, 2018


The Uninsured Rate Rose Last Year, a New Report Says--But Only Among Republicans (JORDAN WEISSMANN, MAY 01, 2018, Slate)

 One of the most puzzling findings in the Commonwealth Fund report is that, last year, the uninsured rate only increased among Republicans. That's surprising, since even in deep red states that didn't expand Medicaid, many low-income minority communities where people are at risk of falling into Obamacare's coverage gap tend to vote Democrat. And yet, Commonwealth found no statistically significant change in the uninsured rate among Democrats or independents; among Republicans it rose 4 percentage points.

This is just one year's result in a single tracking poll, so I don't want to over-interpret it. But the finding is both odd and a bit hard to explain. Sara Collins, vice president of Health Care Access and Coverage program at the Commonwealth Fund, suggested that a lot of Americans may have just been confused about their health care options, after Republicans tried to repeal and replace Obamacare, especially because the Trump administration slashed the program's advertising and outreach budget. And in fact, polls have shown that there's an enormous amount of confusion among voters about whether Trump actually repealed the ACA, either fully or partly, with Republicans much more likely to believe he undid the law.

In other words, it's possible that the country's uninsured rate is rising in part because Republicans Jedi-mind-tricked their own voters into believing that they killed off Obamacare, despite mostly failing to do so. It'd almost be impressive, if it wasn't so heinous.

Posted by at May 1, 2018 7:06 PM