Trump billionaire donors may not need health insurance but millions of his voters definitely do
Seema Verma must be busy.
She’s so busy trying to make it harder for Americans to get health insurance as the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, which also administers Obamacare, that she has done little-to-nothing to remind Americans that they should go to HealthCare.Gov to get health coverage by the December 15 national deadline.
Here’s what Politico’s Dan Diamond found when he checked her Twitter feed on the morning of Wednesday December 6:
CMS administrator @SeemaCMS, who is responsible for oversight of the Affordable Care Act, has not sent a single tweet on the ACA open enrollment period that ends next week.
She did find time to send these, though. pic.twitter.com/cdgonBFoZy
— Dan Diamond (@ddiamond) December 6, 2017
This is literally the least she could do — especially when you consider that Verma’s predecessor Andy Slavitt tweeted encouraging people to get covered through the Affordable Care Act four times — on the first day, November 1, 2016, of the open enrollment period alone.
But forget about Verma and Slavitt. You know who could make a real difference with his tens of millions of real followers and even more bot followers? Donald Trump — who has never once encouraged his constituents to get insured.
You know what killing outreach is a key part of Trump’s plan to sabotage the ACA. Despite that enrollments were still running 17 percent ahead of last year nationally, according to Charles Gaba , the world’s greatest ACA signup expert.
But the enrollment period has been cut short, which means we’re actually millions of enrollments behind. And lower enrollments mean less healthy people getting covered and higher prices. That’s how the sabotage works.
For a moment, lets pretend that Donald Trump actually cares about the people he governs. This may require hypnotism.
You there? Okay.
If he did care, he would tweet “Thanks to your favorite president (me), you may be able to get health insurance for $0 a month in 2018. Go to HealthCare.gov.”
And as many as 4.5 million Americans would find that they could end up with coverage for free. They’d have to pay co-pays and deductibles, like most everyone else, but if they were to face a serious accident or illness, they could avoid losing their homes or medical bankruptcy. And just by being covered they’d experience lower stress, studies suggest, making them healthier in the future.
And even if they can’t find a free bronze plan, there’s an 8 of 10 chance they’ll find coverage for less than $80 a month. An artful deal.
Of course, Trump won’t do this because he has a native instinct to undo everything Obama did and, coincidentally, so does his party — but not out of personal animosity/racism but because the ACA did something conservatives genuinely hate: it helps poor people by taxing the super rich.
One Trump tweet doesn’t just reach his Twitter followers — it makes international news. And him doing something counterintiutive — like giving a shit about anyone but his rich donors — would grab headlines.
Let’s say he gets a million extra Americans to sign up. A study in the New England Journal of Medicine, found that for every 455 people who gained coverage, one life was saved each year.
One tweet could save more than two thousand lives.
This isn’t going to happen, but why not? Trump doesn’t mind taking credit for Obama’s economy so why shouldn’t he just start giving out Trumpcare?