Last Friday, the GOP-controlled congress voted to avert a government shut-down and pay for a temporary extension of funding for CHIP, the children’s health insurance that a lot of single moms and their kids rely on.
But why a temporary extension? They worked through the midnight oil in November and December to pass a law to give corporations big tax cuts. Why not put a little elbow grease into kids’ healthcare?
This is why single moms like me don’t like the GOP’s agenda. We are tired of unstable and unreliable men making us promises to help take care of our kids that they obviously have no intentions of keeping.
CHIP is a staple of what growing up in America should mean for kids of single moms.
Really poor families qualify for Medicaid and don’t need CHIP. But a lot of kids (at least 9 million) live in households that make a working-class wage and are trying to make ends-meet with that. For those people, CHIP is not a nice-to-have, it is the difference between kids having enough healthcare coverage or none, at all.
In late 2017, Alabama announced that in they would no longer enroll kids in CHIP after the New Year. Connecticut and Colorado are shutting their CHIP programs down. States across the country are developing contingency plans – panicking over how to put 9 million kids out of healthcare without infuriating their constituents.
The writing is on the wall: soon single moms will either need to qualify for Medicaid or make enough money to buy insurance through Obamacare, whose premiums are set to skyrocket, now that the GOP tax law has killed the individual mandate – Obamacare’s unpopular tax on not having insurance.
Mommas who rock the boat, rock the vote.
A CNN Exit poll showed that American voters who were single mainly voted for Clinton. Among these, the strongest support was from unmarried women at 63%.
What’s more: according to a Pew poll, the incoming group of American single moms say that they are not only unmarried but have never been married. This is a generation that is truly liberating women from co-dependence on men. Whether or not that fits the GOP’s values structure is irrelevant.
Women can work without a man’s help or approval. Women can have babies without a man’s help or approval (okay, there will need to be semen at some point in the process but that is in abundant supply). And women can raise those babies with complete autonomy into adults – male and female – whose childhood values structure was completely and entirely crafted and honed by a woman.
This is no minor issue! One out of every four American families is a single mom household. We can make and break elections if we choose to vote and we teach the next generation of voters what American values are.
And we have flexed that muscle before. 74% of America’s single moms voted for Obama in 2008 and 75% voted to re-elect him in 2012. Among poorer single moms (the demographic that qualify for CHIP), Obama took home a commanding 79% of the vote against Romney. (Source.)
Trump’s America worries us as moms.
Never mind that we are single moms. Moms in general are getting worried.
Our first concern is education costs but an increasing concern is that programs like CHIP that served our kids so well under the Democrats are going to slip and expire under GOP leadership. These are signs – signs that we are moving into a future where the only people who are considered worthy of care are the rich and the especially the old-money rich families. Being “new money” used to be a point of pride in America – on both sides of the aisle. Have we lost that?
Moms are skeptical about the future that Washington is making for our kids. 15% of Moms say that America is becoming a better place for their kids. An alarming 53% of American Moms say that this country’s future for our kids is getting worse.
One can’t help but wonder how Republicans are letting single moms go, going into the 2018 midterm elections where their agenda is becoming less and less popular.