Dec 18, 2019 - Politics & Policy

Trump cut Medicaid funding for Puerto Rico in budget deal

Puerto Rico flag

Photo: ERIC ROJAS/AFP via Getty Images.

President Trump slashed Medicaid funding for Puerto Rico during budget negotiations on a federal spending deal put forth in Congress this week, Politico reports.

Why it matters: Puerto Rico is now slated to receive $5.7 billion in Medicaid funds over two years, rather than $12 billion over four years earmarked by a House subcommittee. The island's Medicaid program has been consistently on the brink of nonexistence and relying on short-term funding extensions.

Background: The $12 billion funding plan had been previously backed by both Republicans and Democrats.

What they're saying: A White House spokesperson called the agreement a "win for President Trump and the American people," per Politico.

Between the lines: Puerto Rico has been a frequent target of Trump throughout his presidency.

  • Following Hurricane Maria in 2017, devastating conditions on the island led to calls for funding, which Trump argues he overwhelmingly met. Puerto Ricans said they continued to struggle and were in need of assistance to recover.

Go deeper: How little we know about Puerto Rico's economy

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