Does Trump Like or Dislike Socialized Medicine?

October 17, 2018

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President Trump’s commentary in USA TODAY against Medicare for All raised hackles in some conservative circles. He seemed to be speaking out of both sides of his mouth on socialized medicine:

“In practice, the Democratic Party’s so-called Medicare for All would really be Medicare for None. Under the Democrats' plan, today’s Medicare would be forced to die.”

“I also made a solemn promise to our great seniors to protect Medicare. That is why I am fighting so hard against the Democrats’ plan that would eviscerate Medicare.”

“Likewise, Democrats would gut Medicare with their planned government takeover of American health care.”

“If Democrats win control of Congress this November, we will come dangerously closer to socialism in America. Government-run health care is just the beginning.”

“I am committed to resolutely defending Medicare and Social Security from the radical socialist plans of the Democrats. For the sake of our country, our prosperity, our seniors and all Americans.”

But Medicare is socialized medicine. So what’s going on here? Some conservatives were incensed, like Peter Suderman at Reason“Donald Trump Defends Medicare, A Socialist Program, from the Threat of Socialism.”

So, consider these facts: 

  •   It may not be as it seems. (e.g. The Princess Bride: “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means".
  •   Trump wants Republicans in power after the November 6 elections.
  •   Senior citizens are a very powerful voting block.
  •   Millions of senior citizens are totally dependent on Medicare, having been forced into it.
  •   Most seniors don’t view Medicare as a socialized system.
  •   Most seniors don’t want to lose Medicare.

The Democrat’s rallying cry for the mid-term election is Medicare for All.  Trump’s commentary is likely aimed at squelching their false claims and keeping them out of power. “Medicare-for-All” would not only be more unaffordable than Obamacare, it would have a dire impact on patients. Care rationing details from H.R. 676 include:

  •  Annual staffing rates for doctors and nurses set by the federal government
  •  Private insurance not allowed to cover anything Medicare for All offers, even if the service is often denied or  limited to certain types of patients.
  • “Monthly lump sums” paid to hospitals to cover ALL expenses.
  •  National Board of Universal Quality and Access established.
  •  Physicians must submit bills to a regional director
  •  National electronic billing system 
  •  National list of approved medications

So consider the politics of this election season and give Trump some wiggle room.

But with 60.6 percent of 8,000 physicians surveyed saying they’ll retire, cut hours, go part-time or change to a non-clinical job in the next three years (due to current government interference in patient care) the only question patients should be asking Democrats that support Medicare for All is: “Will there even be a physician in my exam room?”

Meanwhile, CCHF is asking the Trump administration to provide an escape from Medicare for those who are not yet dependent on it. SIGN our petition to Trump before November 15.

Supporting freedom every day,

Twila Brase, RN, PHN
President and Co-founder