Category Archives: Maine

Angus King Urges Interior Department To Reconsider Offshore Drilling Proposal | Mainepublic.org

U.S. Sen. Angus King of Maine joined several senators from coastal states on the floor of the Senate Tuesday to urge the Interior Department to reconsider its proposal to open nearly all offshore areas to oil and gas exploration.

King says with the longest coastline of any state, Maine has a lot to lose if there is a spill from drilling operations.

“We depend upon our coast. Tourism and visitation to our beaches and coastal communities are a billion-dollar industry, the largest single employer in our state,” he says. “The cost of a single incident along our coast which affected our lobster industry or affected our visitor industry in the summertime, in the spring or fall, would be catastrophic for our state.”

Read the rest of this story.

Advertisements

Maine Voices: Higher education, employers must work together for bright future | Portland Press Herald

There is a Cherokee parable where a grandfather describes a great fight that goes on inside of every person. The grandfather explains that the fight is between two wolves, one representing selfishness and arrogance and the other representing kindness and compassion.

“Which wolf will win?” asks the grandson. “The one we feed,” answers the grandfather.

We are reminded of this parable and the grandfather’s answer when thinking of another struggle taking place inside our state.

It’s a struggle between two economic futures. One future is bleak: Maine as an aging state with limited job opportunities and young Mainers fleeing for greener pastures.

The other is a future of promise and innovation with an increase in good paying jobs and an educated populace prepared to assume those jobs.

Read the rest of this commentary.

Kennebec River water levels could stay high into next week | Bangor Daily News

The blockage of ice in Farmingdale that has caused unusually high water levels in the Kennebec River could last for days, officials said.

On Thursday, the National Weather Service again reissued a flood warning for the river in the Augusta area, saying that the Kennebec “will remain near flood stage for the next couple of days.” The water height by Calumet Bridge in Augusta had receded back below the official flood cutoff point of 12 feet on Friday, but around 5 p.m. it remained near flood level at 11.4 feet, which still is considered high.

Officials said warm daytime temperatures expected for Saturday likely won’t be enough to dislodge the ice jam, which formed at a narrow part of the river, causing water to flood over the banks in Hallowell and Augusta last weekend.

Mixed wintry precipitation expected on Tuesday could free up the jam, but it could just prevent runoff from flowing downstream, causing water levels to rise again.

“It’s still a waiting game,” said Tom Hawley, a forecaster in the NWS office in Gray. “How much flooding will occur before that jam moves is the problem.”

Read the rest of the story.

Acadia National Park logged record 3.5 million visitors in 2017 | Bangor Daily News

Acadia National Park had a record-setting 3,509,271 visitors in 2017, a 6.2 percent increase over the all-time high set the year before.

The latest record-setting number isn’t much of a surprise, as on Jan. 9, park officials announced an estimated 3,497,187 visitors had visited Acadia as of the end of November. That’s 560,601 more than came into Acadia for 11 months of 2016 and broke the park’s record 3.3 million visitations that year.

An estimated 12,684 people visited Acadia in December, about 14.4 percent less than came to the park in December 2016, when 14,611 visited, according to statistics provided by park spokesman John Kelly.

Read the rest of the story.

Maine town manager under fire for promoting white separatism | Portland Press Herald

[Note: What a backward, twisted little man this guy is. This country is built on immigration and diversity. This guy is a moron, but worse, he is a racist, bigot and misogynists.]

The town manager of Jackman is coming under fire for promoting white separatist views and making comments critical of Islam.

Thomas Kawczynski describes himself as a “steward” for New Albion, espousing ideas based on the races being “voluntarily separate.” The New Albion website says it is “defending the people and culture of New England.”

Kawczynski, in a phone interview with the Press Herald on Friday night, said New Albion is not a racist movement, but one that promotes “monoculture.”

“I am not a white supremacist. I am not a racist,” Kawczynski said. “What gets me in trouble sometimes is I am a white person who is not ashamed to be white.”

Kawczynski, 37, said that living in northern Maine, where most of the people are white, allows him to “experience the joys of living in a monoculture.” He said he opposes Islam because it’s “not compatible with Western culture.”

Jackman is in Somerset County on the Canadian border. The town had a population of 862 people in the 2010 census.

Read the rest of the story.

Maine officials blast Trump plan to open coastal waters to oil drilling | Bangor Daily News

On Thursday, President Donald Trump administration announced a draft proposal that would open large swaths of federal waters to potential oil and gas drilling, including the coast of Maine.

The proposal would open most of the outer continental shelf to oil and gas drilling for a five-year lease period to start in 2019. The prospect of rigs churning up the seabed in the Gulf of Maine, alongside struggling shrimp stocks, valuable scallops and the state’s iconic lobster has environmental advocates furious.

“This is just a slap in the face, frankly, to anybody who wants to protect their economy on the coast,” Natural Resources Council of Maine executive director Lisa Pohlmann said.

Pohlmann said aquaculture, seafood harvesting and tourism would be under threat from such a plan because, as she puts it, “where there is drilling there is spilling.”

Read the rest of the story in the Bangor Daily News.

Frozen in time: Memories of the Ice Storm of ’98 | Bangor Daily News

Twenty years ago, a massive winter storm system tormented Maine for days, turning much of the state into a thick, gigantic icicle. As power lines snapped under the weight of the ice, a half million Mainers were plunged into darkness. Many found themselves without light and heat for as long as three weeks. The entire state was a disaster area. And President Bill Clinton eventually declared it one.

Freezing rain began on Jan. 5, a Monday, and continued for three days. By Jan. 6, the icing was already severe.

If you were in Maine for the Ice Storm of ‘98, you remember.

Kids were out of school for two weeks after their Christmas break was supposed to have ended. Thousands of people were forced to take refuge in emergency shelters. Hospitals were crowded with people needing treatment for hypothermia, falls and carbon monoxide poisoning.

At least five Mainers died because of the storm, including two men who succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning, one who was struck in the head by a falling tree, one who died of hypothermia after falling down the stairs of his dark, cold house and one who was killed when the roof of a gas station island collapsed under the weight of ice. The Maine Emergency Management Agency indicates that six people were killed in Maine because of the storm, but did not specify how the sixth person died.

Read the rest of this story in the Bangor Daily News and view a video on the ’98 storm.

Snow piles up and coastal towns get flooded as blizzard blasts Maine | Portland Press Herald

Portland Press Herald

A powerful nor’easter roared into Maine on Thursday, turning into a blizzard packing heavy, drifting snow and gusting winds that created whiteout conditions and caused traffic accidents, power outages and flooding along the coast.

Eric Sinsabaugh, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray, said the area over southern and coastal Maine was officially in a blizzard by late Thursday afternoon, after seeing three consecutive hours of sustained wind gusts of at least 35 mph and visibility that was restricted to a quarter mile or less.

Snow fell at a rate of between 1 and 2 inches per hour Thursday afternoon, and was expected to accumulate to a foot or more in Portland.

Final snow totals probably won’t be available until Friday, Sinsabaugh said, but as of Thursday night there were accumulations of 11 inches in Gray, 11.9 inches in Yarmouth, 11 inches in Freeport, 7 inches in Brunswick and 12 inches in Portland.

Portland and coastal areas were expected to see a total accumulation of 12 to 13 inches, and inland areas between 7 and 13 inches. Down East will see the highest accumulations, with up to 16 inches expected along the coast.

Mal Walker, a meteorologist with the weather service office in Caribou, said Thursday’s storm was one of the most powerful to hit the East Coast in recent memory.

Read the rest of this story in the Portland Press Herald.

Mainers to be thankful for | Portland Press Herald

As Mainers gather around loaded tables and greet family members who come from afar, we also take a moment to give thanks to those among us who give their time and their energy to the larger community, sharing their humanity and enriching the world around us. Here are 10 people who have worked diligently, often without recognition, to comfort, protect, nurture and inspire others who need a helping hand.

Read the rest of this story.

As Mainers endorse expanding MaineCare, feds back LePage methods to shrink it | Bangor Daily News

On Tuesday, as thousands of Mainers supportedexpanding health care to an estimated 70,000 residents through Medicaid, the federal government signaled support for conservative measures that would likely constrict that access and give states greater control over the program.

The federal Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services, or CMS, now aims to make it easier for states to customize their Medicaid plans, including changes such as monthly premiums and work requirements that some analysts say could drive down enrollments. Coming against a backdrop of conservative opposition to the Affordable Care Act and the provision that supports and funds the Medicaid expansion, the CMS announcement lends further uncertainty to the future of the voter-approved expansion in Maine.

In a speech Tuesday morning to state Medicaid directors gathered in Arlington, Virginia, CMS Administrator Seema Verma announced the agency’s commitment to working closely with states that seek to require more from “working-age, able-bodied Medicaid enrollees.” The change comes in response to the program’s growth in recent years, she said, and the need to “reset the federal-state relationship.”

Medicaid, known in Maine as MaineCare, is jointly run and funded by the state and the federal governments, providing health insurance to low-income residents.

Verma also said CMS would streamline the processing of state waiver applications designed to give states more flexibility in designing their Medicaid programs.

That’s good news for the LePage administration, which in August submitted its application proposing a monthly MaineCare premium of up to $40, $10 copays for some medical services, a 20-hour-per-week work requirement, and other measures. The application now awaits approval from CMS.

The Maine Department of Health and Human Services said in a statement on Tuesday afternoon that it was “encouraged” by Verma’s announcement.

“Through this waiver, it was the department’s intention to prioritize our limited resources for the Mainers who need them most, while promoting responsibility for one’s individual health and the cost of healthcare,” the statement read, in part. “We look forward to working with the administration to fulfill our shared objective of creating a sustainable Medicaid program through the promotion of individual accountability.”

But Mitchell Stein, an independent health policy consultant who advocates for policies expanding access to health care, said Wednesday that efforts to encumber MaineCare enrollees with work requirements, monthly premiums and other disincentives are intended to discourage enrollment and limit the provision of health services to vulnerable, low-income people.

“Most people on Medicaid who are able to work are already working,” he said. Nationwide, only 13 percent of adults included in the expansion population are able-bodied and not working, in school, or seeking work, Stein said, and of those, three-quarters are either actively looking for work or caring for family members.

“So, the idea that all these people are just sitting around not working is simply not true,” he said.

Read the rest of the story.

Returning to my roots – the great outdoors

IMG_0685

Hiking a low mountain in Maine to California redwoods

 

“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.” – John Muir, 1901

Growing up in rural Northern Maine, I was outdoors more than in. It was the thing to do. Camping, hiking, swimming, fishing, canoeing, sailing and more in the summer.

During the winters I was still outdoors – snowmobiling, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing – but spent a bit more time indoors. After all, it was winter in the deep, dark North Woods of Maine and being inside was about survival. I’m not completely crazy.

Behind my childhood home on the hill overlooking Portage Lake and the small town of Portage was a now-feral hay field and beyond that was a mountain. Not much more than a hill, really, especially by the standards of the Sierra Nevada or Rocky Mountains. It was no Mount Shasta or Mount Whiney. Just a plain, low mountain, ancient and worn, and covered with soft and hardwoods. More ancient than the Sierra or even the Rockies, I seem to recall. Just worn down over time. But in my youth it was a place for adventure and play and escape, with no limits to childhood imagination.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

From that field and mountain, I imagined exploring African jungles and Australian outback. I survived and thrived on countless imaginary deserted islands and roamed the American West ridding it of outlaws. From that spot in Northern Maine, my imagination allowed me to explore the world, rescue heroines and the underdog, and rid the world of the Nazi scourge. In my imagination, at least.

But there are times to imagine and there are times to simply do. I climbed all over that mountain in my backyard and countless others over the years. After a period of aimlessness at University of Southern Maine, I went to Chico State on National Student Exchange. I went for a semester … years ago. And I simply stayed.

Chico was nicely located for outdoor activity – close to hiking, camping and water sports, big on the bicycle culture. The only thing Chico is missing is the ocean. Sea and surf and salt air would have been wonderful there. It was also close to the Sierra Nevada.

But during the first holiday weekend I was in Chico, a group of NSE students and I took a road trip in the opposite direction as the Sierra. Instead we went to Crescent City along the North Coast, stopping to hike among the towering redwoods and along stony beaches. Later I worked as a wildlife firefighter for three summers, putting me deep into the outdoors, sometimes hiking and working in protected wilderness few people get to see ever.

Landing in Vacaville after working at a series of small newspapers, Lagoon Valley Regional Park and Rockville Regional Park were good places to stretch my hiking legs. Muir Woods National Monument in Mill Valley was another favorite place to lace up my boots and simply walk among the trees.

Being outside and hiking have been my life.

Until a couple of years ago, that is. I combination of a knee injury and series of girlfriends who did not share my love for the outdoors limited my exploration. Even limited my adult imagination, I suppose. I did not go to the forest and mountains for far too long. I should have visited the doctor sooner to work to mend the knee and left those disinterested girlfriends behind to go to the forest and mountains. I did neither.

But time passes and knees mend. Thought of disinterested girlfriends fade quickly. I’m back to hiking. And I’m loving it again, just like I always did.

The latest hike last weekend took me to Calaveras Big Trees State Park for the South Grove Trail. And, yes, there are very big trees in the Calaveras Big Trees State Park – giant sequoias, ponderosa pines, sugar pines, incense cedars and white fir, with Pacific dogwoods, leopard lily, Hartweg’s iris, crimson columbine and more. The foliage was passed peak when I hiked the South Grove Trail and the Bradley Grove Trail, about 10 miles of hiking. But I will go back to hike a few other trails.

I plan to hike for decades to come. On the Bradley trail, I ran into two couples and they all must have been in their 80s and there they were hiking. A lifetime of activity means a life worth living.

I’m glad I’m back to hiking. It has been a part of my life since I was a small child climbing that low mountain. It’s part of me. It always was. It always will be.

“The mountains are calling and I must go.” – John Muir

Downeaster plans extension of passenger rail service to Rockland | MaineBiz.biz

The Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority, the public transportation authority created in 1995 to oversee the Downeaster passenger rail service between Maine and Boston and points within Maine, is exploring a seasonal and weekend-only extension of service up to Rockland.

NNEPRA announced the initiative at its annual meeting Monday night as one of its goals for 2018.

The “Downeaster Coastal Connection” pilot program would utilize the Rockland Branch rail line previously used by Maine Eastern Raiload’s excursion trains between Brunswick and Rockland — a service that ended in 2015 — and would be an extension of existing schedules, using existing equipment.

The seasonal and weekend-only service would provide Downeaster transportation to Bath, Wiscasset, Newcastle and Rockland, according to NNEPRA’s news release.

Read the rest of this story.

30 years ago, many doubted Maine Island Trail would work. Today, it’s ‘a treasure’ Bangor Daily News

It was a novel idea — a water trail along the Maine coast, with campsites scattered on the state’s many uninhabited islands. In the fall of 1987, Camden native Dave Getchell, Sr., presented this vision, “a waterway foMITA_logo_NoWebsite-300x151r small boats,” in a single-page editorial in the magazine Small Boat Journal, and readers throughout Maine wrote to Getchell, stating their interest in the idea and offering to become involved.

Now 30 years later, the Maine Island Trail weaves through islands and along the rocky coast for 375 miles and features 218 sites, some for day use and some for camping.

“We are very proud to say the mission has not changed by one word since the beginning,” said Doug Welch, executive director of the Maine Island Trail Association for the past 10 years.

In recognition of the trail’s 30-year milestone, longtime members of MITA, including Getchell and Welch, gathered on Thursday, Oct. 26, at the MITA office in Portland. At the event, members reminisced about the trail’s humble beginnings and celebrated of the realization of a unique vision.

In a phone interview just prior to the party, Getchell, now 88 years old and living in Appleton, explained how the Maine Island Trail got started.

“Being an outdoors person and very fond of the water, and having done quite a lot of coastal cruising myself, it occurred to me that it would be great to have something like a water trail,” Getchell said.

At the time, the concept of creating a trail for paddlers, sailboats and small motorized boats, complete with boat launches and individual campsites, was new and controversial. In fact, the Maine Island Trail may very well be the first official “water trail” in America.

Read the rest of the story.

Maine at the cutting edge of compost technology | Bangor Daily News

Most people don’t spend a lot of time thinking about what happens to waste once it’s been thrown out or flushed away.

But Mark King and the other members of the Maine Compost Team are not like most people. King, an environmental specialist with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, has spent many years learning and teaching the finer points of composting food scraps, dead animals, human waste and other types of waste products. And he is very proud of the Maine Compost School, an award-winning, internationally-acclaimed program that is the longest-running such school in the country. Students from all over have come here for the last 20 years to learn cutting-edge compost technology.

“In 2014 there was an outbreak of avian influenza in the midwest that was getting worse and worse and worse. They didn’t have any experts to help with composting [the dead birds], and three of us from Maine were asked to help,” he said. “I think we’re leading the way. We have a huge abundance of composting expertise in the state of Maine.”

More than 1,000 students have graduated from the Maine Compost School, which is taught twice a year at Highmoor Farm in Monmouth, the University of Maine’s apple, small fruit and vegetable research facility. The farm has a state-of-the-art composting facility where students receive classroom instruction, laboratory experience and hands-on project exercises at the school that has received the Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence and a special national award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, among other recognitions. Students spend a week digging into the art and science of composting, King said a few days after the fall class had finished, learning everything from how to correctly manage a small backyard bin to a large community compost facility.

“We teach the skill. We talk about the systems. We talk about how to build a pile and how to manage a pile,” King said. “It’s a program that fills up every class. It’s citizens, municipal officials, regulators. We accept anyone. Our philosophy is we’ll train anybody that wants to learn about compost.”

Read the rest of this story.

Maine congressional delegation unites in opposing potential tripling of Acadia entry fee | Portland Press Herald

All four members of Maine’s congressional delegation have come out in opposition to a proposal by the Department of the Interior that would raise the entrance fee at 17 popular national parks, including Acadia.

Sens. Susan Collins, a Republican, and Angus King, an independent, sent a joint letter Thursday asking the Department of the Interior to reconsider the idea because of its potential economic impact.

They wrote that “365 days a year, Acadia National Park – one of the crown jewels of the National Park System – serves as a tremendous resource for the people of Maine and the visitors who come here.

“From May through October, it sustains a vibrant economy in the region, bringing millions of visitors across the country and the world to the coast of Maine.”

The fee increase proposal, announced this week, is meant to help address a maintenance backlogin the park system. As drafted, it would nearly triple the cost of vehicle passes at Acadia, from $25 to $70. In addition to per-vehicle costs, entrance fees for individuals would rise from $12 to $30, while the fee for motorcyclists would jump from $20 to $50 during the peak season.

Read the rest of this story.

A lobster cruise: The luckiest catch in Maine | CNN Travel

cnn travel story
Portland, Maine (CNN) — Captain Tom Martin turns the handle that draws up the lobster trap sitting on the ocean floor 45 feet below the surface to see what he can see.

It’s a guessing game every time: Will it be big enough — but not too big — to keep? Will it be a pregnant female, which he can’t keep?

“It’s easy to get hooked on it,” Martin says. “I’ve been doing this for 33 years, and I still enjoy going out to pick up the traps and seeing what’s inside. It’s like playing a slot machine — you never know what’s going come up in the trap.”

Martin, the owner of Lucky Catch Cruises of out of Portland, Maine, will only catch a few lobsters on this fall day at traps he and his crew have lowered into Casco Bay after passing by the 1890s-era Spring Point Ledge Light and Fort Gorges, a Civil War-era fort. His traps are within view of Portland Head Light, a working lighthouse first lit in 1791.

When many people think of Maine, those iconic lobsters he’s pulling up in traps immediately come to mind.

There are endless ways to enjoy Maine’s favorite crustacean on a visit to the Pine Tree State, whether it’s the Lobster Shack at Two Lights, lobster done fancy at Eventide Oyster Co. or any of the dozens of lobster shacks along the coastline.

But it all comes back to the lobstermen and women who catch lobsters year-round, harvesting a record 130 million pounds of lobster worth $533 million in 2016, according to the Maine Department of Marine Resources.

Read the rest of this story and for video and more photos.

Our View: President Trump’s anti-opioid proposal falls far short of need | Portland Press Herald

Easing the grip of opioid addiction on our state and our country will take commitment, time, compassion, science-based policymaking and a lot of new federal money. President Trump’s declaration this week that the crisis is a public health emergency fails to bring these resources to bear against an epidemic that’s taking 142 American lives every day.

Trump has long promised to make the addiction crisis his focus. His pledge to take action is credited with helping put him over the top during the New Hampshire presidential primary, and he pressed the issue in Maine, too, telling a Bangor crowd just weeks before the election that “we will not only stop the drugs from pouring in, but we will help all of those people so seriously addicted get the assistance they need to unchain themselves.”

But although he vowed Thursday “to liberate our communities from this scourge of drug addiction,” the fine print in his plan doesn’t back up his promises.

The public health emergency is in effect for only 90 days. It unlocks an emergency fund currently worth only $57,000. And it will allow the federal government to waive some regulations, shift some existing grant money from HIV patients to those fighting addiction, and expand the use of telemedicine treatment.

So while the plan to fight an ongoing epidemic that killed over 64,000 Americans last year does take some commendable – if small – steps, it has a built-in expiration date. More importantly, and tellingly, it’s getting no new federal money – and the long-term funding forecast for federal anti-opioid efforts is similarly bleak.

Read the rest of this editorial.

82-year-old man becomes oldest person to hike the entire Appalachian Trail | The Washington Post via the Bangor Daily News

There was a moment back in August when Dale “Grey Beard” Sanders considered giving up.

In the middle of the 100-Mile Wilderness in Maine, far from help, he was bleeding internally and having heart palpitations – not surprising considering that he was 50 or 60 years older than most of the people he had met on the Appalachian Trail.

Sanders called his wife in Bartlett, Tennessee, and she urged him to keep going. With a go-ahead from his doctors, he did, and on Thursday, Sanders, 82, officially became the oldest person to hike the entire 2,190-mile trail in a year.

He walked much of it alone, but for the last mile, ending at the Appalachian Trail Conservancy headquarters in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, Sanders was joined by friends, family and hikers – including a pair of dogs – he had met along the trail.

At the end of it, he danced a jig.

“I feel euphoric!” he said. “I keep thinking, is someone going to come out of the woodwork and say, ‘Uh-uh, I hiked it last year . . . and I was 83′ – but no one has stepped up and said that.”

“Someone said to me, ‘You can’t do it, the only way an old person’s going to be able to hike the Appalachian Trail is if they’ve hiked it before.’ That challenged me.”

Read the rest of this story.

Your tiny house dream could be a scratch ticket away thanks to the Maine Lottery | Bangor Daily News

As the phenomena of tiny houses gains popularity, they seem to be popping up everywhere, including on the newest Maine State Lottery’s scratch ticket game.

Now through Dec. 9, for $5 anyone can buy a chance at winning their very own custom-built tiny house prize valued at $87,143 including state and federal taxes as part of the lottery’s “Tiny Homes, Big Wins” game.

Not a bad return on a $5 home investment. If you win, that is.

“The Maine Lottery is always looking for ways to make our games fun and exciting for players,” said Michael Boardman, director of the Maine Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages & Lottery Operations lottery division. “We were looking for something different that would be fun and relevant in today’s culture and we thought that a tiny home was a perfect fit.”

Read the rest of this story.

Our View: Collins’ presence needed to contain Trump’s chaos | Portland Press Herald

Sen. Susan Collins could not have picked a better moment to announce her decision to forgo a race for governor and continue serving in the United States Senate.

Just as she was walking the members of the Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce in Rockport through her analysis of the problems in our health care system, President Trump was in Washington trying to make that system fail.

The contrast was stark. Collins was talking about ways to make the system better while Trump was looking for leverage, no matter who gets hurt along the way. It should be obvious to everyone why Maine and the nation need an independent-minded Republican like Collins in Washington to block the administration’s dangerous excesses and, when possible, forge pragmatic deals that keep the country moving forward.

Trump’s moves on health care last week expose his approach to policy-making and a shocking disregard for the millions of people who stand to lose health coverage because of his desire to put pressure on his opponents.

In an executive order signed Thursday, Trump opened the door to insurance companies to sell low-cost plans across state lines. While that might sound good, it’s not. The premiums are less expensive because the plans don’t cover much. A young, healthy person who doesn’t expect to get sick or injured might be willing to take the risk, but these are exactly the people needed in the insurance pool to spread costs. If the only people who buy state-regulated health insurance are the ones who are most likely to make a claim, the premiums will go sky high, and many people will be forced to drop coverage. And to make sure that happens sooner, rather than later, Trump announced with a tweet that he would unilaterally end subsidies that help insurance companies cover out-of-pocket costs for lower-income plan members. That will also drive premiums up, and force people to drop coverage.

Creating chaos in the health insurance markets might deliver some short-term political advantage for Trump, but it won’t get more people covered by decent comprehensive health insurance.

Read the rest of this editorial.