Mar 23, 2017

Trumpcare gives more money to the rich, less to the poor

The Obamacare replacement bill currently moving through the House cuts both Obamacare taxes and benefits, resulting in a regressive redistribution of wealth, the Urban Institute finds. Families with incomes less than $50,000 in 2022 would be worse off financially than under Obamacare, while families making more than that would be better off financially.

But how many families would be better/worse off? We looked the Urban data and then added in Current Population Survey data to find out how many families are in each income category. We found the poorest third of families are worse off, middle-income families are slightly better off and those making more than $200,000 a year — about 8 percent of families — benefit the most.

Data: Urban Institute, Current Population Survey; Chart: Lazaro Gamio / Axios

Why this would happen:

  • The House bill cuts Obamacare taxes, including those on industry groups and high-earners.
  • It converts Obamacare's income-based premium subsidies, which vary with the cost of premiums, to an age-based tax credit that is not tied to the cost of care. Many older and low-income people receive much less assistance under this model.
  • Medicaid expansion is phased out, meaning very low-income families would receive less help buying coverage.
Go deeper