The Number of People Without Health Insurance Has Gone Up Under Trump

A new report shows that the number of uninsured Americans rose by 1 million in 2019.

Percy Alban/Zuma

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The number of uninsured Americans rose by 1 million in 2019, according to a Census Bureau report released Tuesday, reversing a trend of lowering uninsured rates ushered in by the Affordable Care Act.

The number of people without insurance in the United States rose from 28.6 million, or 8.9 percent of the population, in 2018 to 29.6 million, or 9.2 percent of people, in 2019, according to the report.

The uninsured rate among the non-elderly population started falling in 2010 after the Affordable Care Act was enacted, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, but it started to tick back up in 2016. The increased uninsurance rates correlate with President Trump’s promotion of short-term “junk insurance” plans and the repeal of the individual mandate, which required people to pay a penalty if they weren’t insured.

The report also contains some disappointing numbers about coverage of children:

The data in the report was gathered before the pandemic caused record joblessness, so the number of people without insurance in 2020 is likely much higher. Meanwhile, the fate of the ACA hangs in the balance as a lawsuit that could repeal the entirety of the legislation awaits deliberation by the Supreme Court.

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is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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