Every other Thursday, the Equal Voice News digest, “Making It in Trump’s America: People, Policy & Poverty,” will track the latest from the Trump administration and whether its policies are creating poverty or prosperity. We’ll have reports from families and grassroots organizations working on those issues around the country. Here’s our latest:
Will the GOP Health Care Bill Fail Its First Test?
It was supposed to be a big day for those who want to repeal and replace Obamacare. Then it wasn’t. Republican leaders delayed a full House vote expected today because apparently they didn’t have the votes, and it didn’t even seem that close, The New York Times reports.
What’s next? It’s unclear. There could be more arm twisting and deal making. Or, there could be a twist. Stay tuned.
If you’re wondering what it all means there is help. Children may pay the biggest price for the plan and its dramatic approach to reworking, and limiting, Medicaid, The Atlantic reports.
“Part of the problem with restructuring Medicaid is that uninsured parents often have uninsured children – even if those children are eligible for coverage,” The Atlantic says.
“In other words, just making sure that kids are eligible for coverage isn’t enough. They have to enroll. And insurance has to be affordable enough that paying for it doesn’t stretch families too thin. That’s why many policy experts are concerned about giving states the flexibility to implement cuts to Medicaid.”
To see the face of the health care debate, check out this special Equal Voice News report (it’s multimedia): “Repeal and Replace: The True Cost of Repealing Obamacare.”
The Immigration Plot Thickens
Immigration orders seem here to stay, at least on President Donald Trump’s list of priorities. As you try to unpack everything that’s happening, from travel bans to raids, here are a few stories that can help:
Why immigration can be a good thing: “The progressive case for immigration: Whatever politicians say, the world needs more immigration, not less” — The Economist.
Who really pays for the wall? President Donald Trump’s border wall and one of the ways being discussed to pay for it could be bad news for many businesses, “Border adjustment tax could crush millions of businesses, retailers fear.“ — CNBC.
And if you’re wondering where immigrants actually work, CNN found “Immigrant workers are most likely to have these jobs.“ A hint: Many are checking your fruits and vegetables or working in the beauty world.
I thought the president wanted to help coal country. President Trump’s skinny budget would gut the Appalachian Regional Commission, which helps rural communities including the nation’s struggling coal counties, The Washington Post reports in “Trump’s budget targets rural development programs that provide a quiet lifeline.”
The president has promised to cut regulations and help coal-producing regions in other ways.
Baby Steps. While the U.S. lags well behind many of its peers in its paid leave policies, communities are taking small steps to catch up. In Florida, for example, “Palm Beach County moves ahead with paid parental leave for employees,” according to the Sun Sentinel.
Wages rising. Baltimore joined the growing list of cities raising minimum wages, according to The Baltimore Sun. But, it’s been a complicated debate: “What Happens When a Poor City Raises Its Minimum Wage to $15?“
Elsewhere on the minimum-wage front:
- “Supreme Court affirms Arizona’s higher minimum wage“ — Arizona Daily Star.
- “Leading Business Group Argues Against $15 Minimum Wage Proposal” in Illinois. — CBS Chicago.
- “Competing minimum wage bills moving along” in New Mexico. — Albuquerque Journal.
Private Prison Growth. The Trump administration keeps rolling back its predecessor’s rules, “Sessions Rescinds Obama Guidance on Reducing Private Prisons,” The Daily Beast reports.
What you could be reading: It turns out there has been a bit of good news, delivered, in part, by the Economic Policy Institute. “The Most Underrated Story About the U.S. Economy: Income growth is faster at the bottom than at the top. Thank a growing economy, falling unemployment, and minimum-wage hikes across the country” — The Atlantic
(Sources: Jobs With Justice digest; Amazon.com daily, Twitter, Associated Press, news outlets, The Aspen Institute, and, of course, our neighbors. Paul Nyhan is the senior writer for Equal Voice News, which is published by Marguerite Casey Foundation. Ebony Slaughhter-Johnson, an Equal Voice News contributor, provided research assistance with this digest, which has been updated.)