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More Extreme than Trumpcare: Virginia Gov Candidates Endorse Massive Medicaid Cuts

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More Extreme than Trumpcare: Virginia Gov Candidates Endorse Massive Medicaid Cuts

It’s “Block Grants or Bust” for Gillespie and Wagner

Trumpcare could claim its first political victims in 2017 Virginia elections – as two Virginia gubernatorial candidates endorsed massive cuts to health coverage this weekend.

Over the weekend, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported that Ed Gillespie and Frank Wagner both came out in favor of federal block grants to fund Medicaid in Virginia. A block grant proposal would go even further than Trumpcare in cutting health care services for the poor, disabled and elderly. 

“‘I do hope that they block-grant Medicaid and give us some more latitude,’ Gillespie told more than 90 people, including a number of Republican legislators […] State Sen. Frank W. Wagner, R-Virginia Beach, who is running second or third behind Gillespie in the most recent polls, also endorsed the block-grant approach in an interview last week.”

 Governors from around the country have expressed strong bipartisan opposition to Medicaid block grants, which would shift costs to the states and threaten services to the poor and elderly.

 “Virginia will be the first test of Donald Trump’s health care disaster at the ballot box,” said DGA Communications Director Jared Leopold. “But the GOP primary is about proving far-right credentials at all costs. Ed Gillespie and Frank Wagner have now endorsed even more extreme cuts than Donald Trump and Republicans in Congress. That might be good for Republican politics, but it’s a bad deal for Virginians.”