(CNSNews.com) – “Medicaid has always benefitted the poor. That's a good thing. But I remind my colleagues that it has increasingly become a middle-class program,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer told his colleagues on Monday.
Schumer was criticizing President Trump’s Fiscal 2018 budget blueprint, which is expected to be released on Tuesday.
“Recent reports say that the president's budget will target Medicaid for significant cuts,” Schumer warned – more than $600-billion, according to press reports.
Schumer noted that Medicaid provides benefits for 60 percent of Americans in nursing homes, and he asked what will happen to middle class families if Medicaid is cut:
What about a 40 or 50-year-old trying to raise their kids, saving for college and has a parent who needs to be in a nursing home? Right now, Medicaid pays for it. What are they going to do when that's cut?
They have two choices: shell a huge amount of money out of their own pocket, which they can't afford, or maybe bring mom or dad back home, where there may be no room at home for them. What a horrible choice. What a horrible choice. Well, that's what the President is proposing to do when he dramatically slashes Medicaid.
Schumer also said Medicaid cuts would hurt Americans suffering from opioid addiction, disabled people and children.
“So if the reporting is accurate, the cuts to Medicaid in the president's budget carries a staggering human cost,” Schumer said.
Under Obamacare, 31 states expanded their Medicaid rolls, allowing able-bodied, working-age adults to sign up, based on their low incomes alone.
The House-passed health care bill would roll back the Obamacare expansion and block grant Medicaid to the states. That alone would cut more than $800 billion from Medicaid, according to an estimate from the Congressional Budget Office.
Press reports on Tuesday said Trump’s FY2018 budget would cut another $610 billion from Medicaid.