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Noem: Cutting Medicaid = “Flexibility” and “Incentives”

Last updated on 2011.05.12

Last night I dissected Rep. Kristi Noem's false claims to a constituent about her vote to privatize, voucherize, and end Medicare.

As bonus obfuscation, Noem cleverly dodges the draconian cuts she wants to impose on poor folks who receive Medicaid benefits:

Federal funding for Medicaid would be converted into block grants to the states, which will offer flexibility for them to best serve those who need it most and provide incentives to help people out of welfare and into jobs [Rep. Kristi Noem, letter to constituent, 2011.05.03].

...those who need it most... That's Noem-speak for, "We're taking help away from a whole bunch of people!" Says the Congressional Budget Office:

Federal payments for Medicaid under the proposal would be substantially smaller than currently projected amounts. States would have additional flexibility to design and manage their Medicaid programs, and they might achieve greater efficiencies in the delivery of care than under current law. Even with additional flexibility, however, the large projected reduction in payments would probably require states to decrease payments to Medicaid providers, reduce eligibility for Medicaid, provide less extensive coverage to beneficiaries, or pay more themselves than would be the case under current law [Congressional Budget Office, letter to Rep. Paul Ryan, 2011.04.05].

Maybe Congresswoman Noem loves the poor. But she certainly doesn't love telling the full truth about the impact of the rotten plans she votes for.

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