Thursday, December 13, 2018

Trump Slams Dems and Puerto Rico for Possible Government Shutdown

On Wednesday, Trump tweeted that Democrats were attempting to bail out insurance companies and Puerto Rico from ObamaCare, and on Thursday, he went further to suggest Democrats were willing to shut down the government for the sake of Puerto Rico.

Trump’s comments come in lieu of lobbying efforts by island officials, to close a Medicare and Medicaid shortfall and earmark funds for healthcare coverage under the current budget negotiations. Negotiations must be agreed upon by tonight to avoid a government shutdown.

“If (Congress) includes extending current Obamacare funding under Medicaid for Puerto Rico, that wouldn’t be a bailout to the Commonwealth, it would actually be saving money for state and federal taxpayers who would otherwise face an even more massive influx of Puerto Ricans moving to the US, where health care is 3 to 4 times more expensive than in the Island,” said Federico De Jesús, a consultant, former Obama administration official and PRFFA deputy director. “It’s time for the President to fulfill his promise of providing healthcare to all, and stop scapegoating Puerto Rico for his own unrelated failures.”

Trump tweeted about bailing Puerto Rico with “your taxes”, however, Puerto Rico has been a part of the U.S. since it was won from the Spanish during the Spanish-American War. Though Puerto Rico is a territory, and not a state, Puerto Ricans do not pay federal taxes, but pay the same level of Social Security, Medicare, and payroll taxes as the residents of the 50 states.

A bipartisan fiscal control board was started under the Obama administration to oversee Puerto Rico’s financial situation. Puerto Rico is facing extensive debt payments and had seen a mass exodus in the recent years as many families relocate to the mainland U.S.

NBC News Latino