GLAAD responds to house passing GOP tax bill that targets low-income and LGBTQ communities


NEW YORK  GLAAD, the world’s largest LGBTQ media advocacy organization, today condemned the U.S House for passing a sweeping tax reform bill that targets low-income and LGBTQ communities across the nation. In its final form, the tax bill will personally benefit Trump and wealthy Americans while targeting low-income and LGBTQ people by eliminating the individual mandate, triggering massive cuts to Medicaid. Republican lawmakers have already singled that the deficit created by this bill, which could be as high as 2.2 trillion dollars, will result in major cuts in government spending effecting vital programs including Medicare, Social Security, SNAP, and public housing. 

“Congressional leaders rammed through a highly unpopular and dangerous bill under the false promise of a middle-class tax cut while intentionally ignoring the devastating effects this legislation will have on LGBTQ and low-income communities,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of GLAAD. “This scam tax bill will have serious consequences on the lives of our nation’s more marginalized communities, by directly targeting access to affordable and inclusive healthcare.” 

Only one-third of Americans approve of this disastrous bill with the majority of U.S. residents, including one in five Trump supporters believing that this legislation will hurt them personally. 

This bill now heads to the Senate, where is it scheduled to come up for a vote later this evening.

BACKGROUND INFORMATIONHow the GOP Tax Bill Targets LGBTQ Americans 

Eliminates the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) without it, millions of people will drop out of the insurance market and drive up health care costs. This will result in 13 million low-income individuals losing healthcare coverage in the next 10 years, with 4 million losing health coverage in the first year. Cutting health care will affect people at risk for, or living with HIV and result in lack of access to essential medications. 

Raises the deficit by as much as 2.2 trillion dollars resulting in spending cuts to vital programs. According to the AARP, the legislation would result in an automatic $25 billion cut to Medicare.  

  • Think Progress: Paul Ryan admits the GOP will gut Medicare and Medicaid to pay for tax cuts. 
     
  • Newsweek: Republicans will Cut Social Security and Medicare after Tax Plan Passes, says Marco Rubio.
     
  • Medicare is the largest federal funder of HIV care and treatment. Massive cuts to the program would put many people with HIV at risk of losing access to life-saving medicines and treatment 

Lowest-income Americans will take a large hit under the Senate tax bill.  

  • LGBTQ Americans, especially those who are transgender, people of color, or both, experience higher rates of poverty than the general population, and the new tax plan raises taxes for people making less than $30k/y. 

Includes an expanded child tax credit that excludes low-income familiesThis benefit will not be accessible for 10 million children whose parent(s) work for low pay.

  • Families living in poverty are disproportionally LGBTQ. Single LGBTQ adults raising children are three times more likely to report household incomes near the poverty line and married and partnered LGBTQ adults are twice as likely.  

     

BACKGROUND INFORMATION: What a Successful Affordable Care Act Sabotage Would Mean for LGBTQ Americans 

Uninsured rates among LGBTQ adults fell from 28% to 11% between June 2013 and March 2015, following the enactment of the ACA. This is larger decline than that for non-LGBTQ adults, according to a 2015 study by Urban Institute

Access to Medicaid, which is the larger source of coverage for people with HIV living in the United States, significantly increased under the ACA.  Kaiser Institute: “Medicaid spending on HIV accounts for 30% of all federal spending on HIV care and when combining the states’ share of spending, is the second largest source of public financing for HIV care in the U.S.” 

The nondiscrimination provision of the ACA, Section 1557, “prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability” in programs that receive federal funding, protecting transgender patients from being denied services based on their gender identity. This protects gender non-conforming and transgender people, including transition-related care and gender confirmation surgery. 

 
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