Despite campaign claims that he would not touch Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid, President Donald Trump is preparing to do exactly that. Along with Republican leadership, Trump is looking to enact reforms that will assuredly have negative impact on his voter base.
Politico reports that the White House is “quietly preparing a sweeping executive order that would mandate a top-to-bottom review of the federal programs on which millions of poor Americans rely,” while “G.O.P. lawmakers are in the early stages of crafting legislation that could make it more difficult to qualify for those programs.”
As the budget Team Trump unveiled in May demonstrated, such cuts will “inevitably reach many of the lower-income and less-educated whites that have emerged as the cornerstone of the modern Republican coalition,” Ronald Brownstein noted in The Atlantic.
Americans in Republican-controlled states could see even greater changes than those in blue states, as the Trump administration looks to hand greater authority to states in managing certain programs.
Already, federal health officials are reportedly “encouraging states to impose work requirements on able-bodied adults on Medicaid,” plus higher costs for enrollees and “strict disenrollment penalties for not following certain rules.” The Agriculture Department indicated last week that states will soon have greater control over the food-stamps program, which could lead to stricter work requirements or even drug testing for participants.
Trump is expected to have the aforementioned executive order signed as soon as January.
“They’re thinking about welfare reform in a large, all-encompassing way, not a program way,” Jason Turner, executive director of the conservative Secretaries’ Innovation Group, told Politico, adding that Ryan is in the process of developing a “mega-idea” for reform.