By Robert King
May 09, 2018
The White House’s proposal to cut $7 billion from the Children’s Health Insurance Program wouldn’t reduce the number of kids with insurance, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.
The plan drew widespread condemnation from Democrats and critics for cutting the popular bipartisan program. However, the CBO said Wednesday that the number of children with insurance under the program would not be affected.
The $7 billion in cuts is part of a larger package of $15 billion in spending cuts the White House sent to Congress Tuesday. The package would cut $5.1 billion from leftover funding that wasn’t used under CHIP, which provides grants to states to provide insurance for low-income children. It also would cut $1.9 billion in emergency funding for the program.
Congress reauthorized CHIP for a decade in January. CBO projects that the cuts to emergency funding wouldn’t affect the payments to states over the 2018-2028 period.
Democrats have bashed the proposed cuts.
“They’re just taking money away from kids who need healthcare,” said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer during a press conference Tuesday.
Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., said the funds were necessary for instances such as when there is a natural disaster, “when kids need reliable healthcare fast.” The result of the Trump proposal, he said, would be slashing funding for a “critical backstop.”
While the rescission package is expected to pass the House, it is not clear if it can make it through the Senate, where it would need 60 votes to advance to President Trump.
The rescission package comes after Congress passed a $1.3 trillion spending bill in March that funds the government through September. Conservatives and outside groups have bashed the bill for rampant spending.