Ron Johnson, Opioids, and the Great Obamacare Smear

Speaking of Sen. Ron Johnson, he’s also the guy peddling the theory that Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion is making the opioid crisis worse. Doctors are overprescribing opioids to Medicaid recipients, he says, and poor people are then selling them on the black market.

Now, the overprescribing of opioids is a well-known problem, and it’s been associated with doctors who work with all of the following health plans:

  • Employer-based health care
  • Medicare
  • VA hospitals
  • Individual health plans
  • Medicaid
  • Boutique health providers
  • Emergency rooms
  • Military health care
  • All the remaining doctors not associated with any of the above

In other words, the overprescribing of opioids has been associated with every possible health plan in America. But in Johnson’s world, that turns into “Medicaid expansion is making the opioid crisis worse.” Plus there’s this:

The epidemic of opioid overprescribing peaked in 2011, but Medicaid expansion didn’t start until 2014. It could hardly be a driving factor in all this. It’s true, as Keith Humphreys points out, that opioid overdose deaths have kept on rising, but that’s mostly due to heroin and fentanyl, which are black market drugs that have nothing to do with Medicaid.

But Ron Johnson doesn’t care. He bought a ticket for the Trump train, and he’s gonna go wherever the tracks take him.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

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