Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson is asking the Trump administration to appeal a federal judge’s decision to strike down the state’s Medicaid work requirements. “I remain fully committed to the work requirement and we are in this for the long haul because we believe it is the right policy,” Hutchinson, a Republican, said in a press conference Thursday. Hutchinson said that he thought the judge’s ruling was wrong, and that he had just gotten off the phone with members of the Trump administration, who remained committed to the program.

A federal judge on Wednesday threw out Medicaid work requirements in two states. In twin rulings, Judge James E. Boasberg of the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia rejected for a second time Kentucky’s attempt to require recipients to work or volunteer as a condition of coverage and blocked a similar rule in Arkansas. Seema Verma, who is in charge of the Medicaid program, said “We will continue to defend our efforts to give states greater flexibility to help low income Americans rise out of poverty.” The ruling will be appealed.

A federal judge on Thursday rejected the Trump administration’s attempts to expand access to association health plan. U.S. District Judge John Bates in Washington said the administration’s final rule allowing associations and employers to band together to create AHPs goes beyond its authority under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). The Trump administration’s rule allows employers to join together to gain more efficiencies of scale in purchasing coverage and services, and the plans are more affordable because they don’t have to follow many ACA rules. 

Medicare, as President Lyndon B. Johnson put it, is a “light of hope” for elderly Americans. Medicare for All proposals threaten to extinguish it. Medicare for All would break a sacred promise and harm seniors’ access to care by forcing a system designed to support them to take on every other American. They deserve a system that helps them get well, not get in line. As for your taxes, the question isn’t whether Medicare for All would raise them, but by how many tens of trillions. And the monetary cost of Medicare for All is surpassed by its moral cost. The plan would strip coverage from more than 180 million Americans and force them into government insurance.

President Trump proclaimed this week that Republicans will become “the party of health care” and promised that a replacement that will be well-received by voters. “If the Supreme Court rules that Obamacare is out, we’ll have a plan that is far better than Obamacare,” he told reporters Wednesday during an event in the Oval Office. White House aides said they are looking at expanding options, such as bridge plans, that are “free from Obamacare’s burdensome mandates.” Also in the mix is legislation from Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Lindsey O. Graham (R-SC) that would provide grants to states to provide coverage.

The 2020 presidential race will pit the Democrats’ “Medicare for All” proposal against the Trump administration’s “Medicare for Less.” At least that’s how the Washington Post and some Democratic political operatives suggest it will play out. According to Post, progressives are looking to make political hay out of the contrast between their dream of enlarging the Medicare program to cover all 327 million Americans and a Trump budget that proposes to reduce Medicare spending. “Free” medical care vs. pushing granny off the cliff. On closer examination, most of the Medicare savings contained in the president’s budget would likely save beneficiaries money.