A Renewed MS-13 — Courtesy of Obama’s Lax Immigration Policies After taking a major hit under Bush, the vicious Central American gang is back. By Mark Krikorian

The Washington Post this week published a long piece showing how the illegal immigration of young people from Central America, facilitated and even encouraged by the Obama administration, has led to the rebirth of the vicious MS-13 gang in the U.S.

The flow of so-called Unaccompanied Alien Children (UACs) is so obviously the cause of the gang’s revival that the Post’s reporters have to acknowledge it up front: “MS-13’s new push has been fueled by the recent influx of teenage immigrants like Danny, who traveled to the United States without guardians to escape poverty and gang violence only to fall back into it here.”

The tragedy for the gang’s victims profiled in the Post is that MS-13, having been formed by Salvadoran paramilitaries in Southern California during an earlier wave of illegal immigration, had finally been cut down to size. As the Post wrote: “MS-13 was waking after a long dormancy. Top-level prosecutions in Maryland, Virginia and Long Island had effectively decimated MS-13 in the mid-2000s, and its activity had fallen off.”

Enter the Obama administration. From 2009 to 2014, the number of UACs apprehended by the Border Patrol, mostly teenaged boys, increased 13-fold from El Salvador, 15-fold from Guatemala, and 19-fold from Honduras. Despite tendentious suggestions to the contrary, this was not a natural, unavoidable development. The increased crime and disorder in these three so-called Northern Triangle countries of Central America no doubt sparked greater interest in heading to El Norte, but it was Obama’s response to the initial flow that transformed it into a flood.

Mexicans caught at our southern border are sent back right away with relatively little fuss. But Mexico won’t take back non-Mexicans — even though its officials often wave people through on their way north — so returning these OTMs (Other Than Mexicans) to their countries takes more time. That presents the authorities with two options: either detain them until they can be repatriated or, if you run out of detention space, give them a summons to report to an immigration court (called a “notice to appear”) and let them go, even though it could be years before their scheduled court dates.

Past surges of OTMs overwhelmed detention space, and the illegals started to be released. That induced even more people to come, causing the Border Patrol to quickly change direction, scrambling to detain all comers — and the surges quickly subsided. This happened with Nicaraguans in 1988–89 and Brazilians in 2005.

When the latest surge of Central Americans started, the Obama administration never pivoted to detention. Instead, it spent years on the “let them go” option, approaching the surge as a humanitarian issue rather than a law-enforcement matter. Most groups of illegals that included a child (“family units,” they were called, even though many of the children were borrowed or rented for the purpose) were given the summons and dropped off at the bus station. As for the supposedly unaccompanied children — virtually all of whom were accompanied by smugglers, who directed them to flag down the Border Patrol once in the U.S. — instead of prompt repatriation, Obama invoked a part of the law that was intended to protect kids who were the victims of human trafficking (basically, sex slavery), even though few if any of them were. Using that trafficking law as a pretext, Obama declared that all arriving minors would be allowed to enter for resettlement in their chosen destination, and released to their parent or sponsor with few questions asked. They were flown, at taxpayer expense, to join their (usually illegal) relatives who had paid to have them smuggled in the first place. This led a federal judge, in a ruling in a smuggling trial, to decry the government’s collusion with the smugglers: “Instead of arresting [the mother of the child in question] for instigating the conspiracy to violate our border security laws, the DHS delivered the child to her — thus successfully completing the mission of the criminal conspiracy.”

How the Dems Burned $40 Mil to Lose 4 Elections and Scam Supporters $30 million for 1%. Daniel Greenfield

“It’s a bellwether for what the Democratic Party is going to be about,” Democratic National Committee boss Tom Perez boasted.

That was back in March and the Dems had just begun their frantic spending spree in Georgia’s Sixth. By the time it was over, Jon Ossoff, an awkward immature hipster who didn’t even live in the district, had raised $23.6 million and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee had burned through another $5 million. Other groups threw in around $2.6 million to achieve absolutely nothing.

$31 million had been spent and wasted on history’s most expensive congressional election. And the Dem experts congratulated themselves that they had lost by a smaller margin than in the past.

They had spent $30 million more than in their first special election in Kansas to gain a whole 1%.

Just as after their previous special election defeats, the charts and graphs came out comparing their performance to those of previous elections. Never mind that turnout differs dramatically during presidential and special elections. Or that spending $31 million to lose by 6 percent is a disaster.

What the Democrat Party really was going to be about was setting piles of money on fire.

In Montana, a quixotic bid by Rob Quist had garnered $5 million in donations and another $1 million in outside spending. Even after a stunt by a Guardian reporter caused the Republican candidate to lose many of his newspaper endorsements, Quist barely ended up with 44 percent.

The special election frenzy began in Kansas when the left decided that Rep. Mike Pompeo’s open seat might be winnable. After Trump’s victory, angry Dems decided to pour money into the campaign. Democrat James Thompson raised around $832,000, but Republican Ron Estes won by 7 percent.

Or single digits.

And the gold rush was on. The special election margin was compared to Trump’s margin of victory. The entrails and tea leaves were read. And the consultants declared it a referendum on Trump.

Millions from blue states flowed into special elections in red states to prove that Trump had lost public support. The deeper theory behind this spending spree was that setbacks in safe districts would lead the GOP to abandon Trump. And that played into feverish conspiracy theories about the 25th Amendment or Senate Republicans turning on Trump in time for impeachment that had gone mainstream on the left.

Yes, It Is All About Islam Ibn Warraq takes on the apologists’ lies. Bruce Bawer

Douglas Murray, whose book The Strange Death of Europe I applauded here the other day, has called him “one of the great heroes of our time.” I fully agree. His name – or, at least, his pen name – is Ibn Warraq, and he’s the author of such important and eloquent works as Why I Am Not a Muslim (which I wrote about here eleven years ago), Why the West Is Best (which I reviewed here five years ago), and What the Koran Really Says. Born in India and educated in Britain, Warraq began criticizing Islam in print during the 1988-89 Satanic Verses controversy, when he was appalled by the failure of celebrated writers and intellectuals to defend Salman Rushdie’s freedom of speech. Warraq, who was then based in France and now lives in the U.S., has been publishing books on Islam ever since, and is one of the essential contemporary authors on the subject, courageously telling ugly truths about a religion – an ideology – that has been swathed in pretty lies.

His new book, The Islam in Islamic Terrorism: The Importance of Beliefs, Ideas, and Ideology, is (if it doesn’t sound a bit odd to put it this way) a godsend – a comprehensive answer to every one of those duplicitous politicians, lily-livered journalists, and slimy professional “experts” and “consultants” who tirelessly insist that Muslim terrorists have hijacked a peaceful faith. Some of us don’t need to be told that this “Religion of Peace” stuff is arrant nonsense; but innumerable apologists continue to absolve Islam itself of guilt for violent terror, and tens of millions of people in the West continue to buy their bull – some because they are themselves so pure of heart that they simply can’t believe any religion would actually preach violence, and others because admitting the facts would make them feel like bigots.

Many apologists insist that violence in the name of Islam is a relatively recent development; Warraq makes it crystal clear that it’s prescribed in the Koran and has been practiced from the outset. Since 9/11, apologists have attributed Islamic terrorism to such “root causes” as poverty, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, U.S. foreign policy, Western imperialism, and the Crusades – anything but Islam itself. About this determination to formulate sophisticated answers to a question that the terrorists themselves have already answered repeatedly and definitively, Warraq observes that “[t]he centrality of religion in the Islamic world is something that Western liberals fail to understand or take seriously.” This isn’t just true; it’s one of the tragic realities of our time.

One by one, Warraq expertly shreds every one of the apologists’ fake “explanations” for terror. Imperialism? Warraq reminds us that Muslims, too, have been imperialists, destroying “thousands of churches, synagogues, and temples…in a most brutal fashion” and exterminating “whole civilizations such as the Pre-Islamic cultures of Iran (Zoroastrians) and the Assyrians.” Saudi Arabia, homeland of fifteen of the nineteen 9/11 hijackers, “was never colonized by the West” but was, rather, part of an Islamic empire – namely the Ottoman Empire, governed by Turks from Constantinople. If those Saudis were spurred by a rage at empire, why not fly a plane into the Hagia Sophia?

Senate GOP Launches Obamacare “Repeal” Bill Is Obamacare here to stay if it passes? Matthew Vadum

After a month of secret negotiations, Senate Republicans unveiled their own version of health care reform legislation yesterday that, like the House bill, tinkers around the edges of the Obamacare system but leaves the fundamentals of the failing program in place.

It is yet another sobering reminder that the Washington establishment, including GOP congressional leadership, has never wanted to repeal Obamacare, whose built-in obsolescence was written into the program specifically to bring about the collapse of the health care insurance system and usher in single-payer. Republican leaders want to keep Obamacare around so they can continue running against it. Politicians do, after all, need villains, real or imagined, to get out the vote. Republican lawmakers, despite their rhetoric, chafe at the idea of getting rid of the program because it gives them power over one-sixth of the national economy.

President Trump, who speaks frequently of the importance of repealing Obamacare and giving patients more choices, may be in a hurry to drain the swamp in Washington, but the swamp is in no hurry to be drained.

Four courageous conservatives have already spoken truth to power by coming out against the language in the new draft bill. Sens. Mike Lee (R-Utah), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), and Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.) want market-based reforms, not changes to Obamacare designed to prolong its life.

“Currently, for a variety of reasons, we are not ready to vote for this bill, but we are open to negotiation and obtaining more information before it is brought to the floor,” the quartet of lawmakers said in a joint statement.

“There are provisions in this draft that represent an improvement to our current healthcare system but it does not appear this draft as written will accomplish the most important promise that we made to Americans: to repeal Obamacare and lower their healthcare costs.”

Ken Cuccinelli, president of Senate Conservatives Action, described the draft as “another betrayal” by McConnell.

After writing the bill behind closed doors, McConnell has once again done exactly the opposite of what he told the voters he would do. MitchCare keeps Obamacare’s coverage mandates, it keeps Obamacare’s costly Medicaid spending, and it keeps Obamacare’s subsidies. If it passes, it will lead to endless bailouts, price increases, and debt – all blamed on Republicans and the free market.

Harvey Mansfield speaks: Venerable Harvard professor laments the ruination of higher education ***** Nathan Rubbelke –

In an exclusive interview with The College Fix, venerable conservative Harvard University Professor Harvey Mansfield laments he is ‘not very optimistic about the future of higher education’ https://www.thecollegefix.com/post/32311/

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Harvey Mansfield has been in higher education for a long time. In fact, he’s been a faculty member at Harvard since 1962. Yet, after all those years, the conservative professor of government isn’t hopeful about future of his trade.

“No, I’m not very optimistic about the future of higher education, at least in the form it is now with universities under the control of politically correct faculties and administrators,” he said.

His remark came during a 35-minute interview in April in his fourth floor office at Harvard, where the 85-year-old Mansfield lamented universities for losing their aspiration, describing them as bubbles of staunch liberalism ruled by faculties that have failed to make universities reach their potential.

‘Bubbles of decadent liberalism’

Once America’s pride, Mansfield argues universities are no longer the marketplace of ideas nor the bastions of free speech.

“Now [universities’] sole function seems to be to attack a free country and to try to narrow freedoms to privileges, for those who have been designated victims,” he says.

What universities have become are “bubbles of decadent liberalism,” that teach students to look for offense when first examining an idea.

“They don’t prepare you for the real world or for even an unreal world. They prepare you to be sort of lifelong college students,” he said.

Who’s to blame? Mansfield argues it’s a combination of administrations, students and faculties. However, he also puts most of the onus on his counterparts.

“I would put the blame primarily on the faculty because they could have their way and if their way was of a vibrant and remarkable university, they could have their way if they wanted it,” he said.

Too many professors, according Mansfield, give in and allow themselves to be cowed by deans and presidents that don’t want their faculty to make trouble. However, Mansfield himself hasn’t bought into the politically correct campus culture.

“You know, I try to use my tenure. If you are a professor and you have tenure, you ought to use it to say things which politicians who depend on getting votes can’t say,” he says.

Universities don’t know why they exist

Mansfield argues that higher education isn’t sure anymore why education is higher than anything else. For him, the current state of higher education stems from the current conception of culture.

Speaking in philosophical and theoretical language, Mansfield said culture used to mean refinement. Today, he says it “just means the way a society happens to think and there’s no value judgement in it any longer.”

“With this, universities have lost their sense of aspiration, of providing direction or questioning or thought,” he said. “So I think this is a general malaise of higher education. It doesn’t know why it exists.”

Though, that isn’t the biggest change the government professor has seen in his more than half century in higher education. That belongs to the 1960s, and the conception of liberalism that decade ushered in.

“What happened then was students who were mostly liberal and the faculty who were mostly liberal turned against themselves. The late [1960s] was an attack on liberalism, not on conservatism,” he said.

He adds the 1960s led liberals away from being concerned with liberty, with them losing a sense of speaking for Americans and humans as a whole and instead focusing on particular groups, like blacks and women.

“So, the universal ideas were turned into ideas for promoting the tribe, a kind of section within our democracy,” Mansfield explained.

What it led to, he says, was the labeling of certain social groups as “officially designated victims.”

“We have a society now of officially designated victims plus the rest. In the recent election, I’d say the rest took notice and rebelled,” he said.

Case Western Reserve offers professors up to $10,000 to promote social justice

Only engineering prof got funding to redesign a class around social justice https://www.thecollegefix.com/post/33779/

The Social Justice Institute at Case Western Reserve University is offering students and professors thousands of dollars each to promote, research and advocate for social justice.

While the university says “social activism” has been a focus since its founding by an abolitionist, the seven-year-old institute – which is directly funded by the administration – has more recently started paying people to make this “hallmark” of Case Western Reserve a reality.li

Undergraduates can apply for up to $2,500 to support any research project related to social justice, and graduate students can apply for grants up to $3,500.

Professors who wish to redesign their classes to better promote social justice can also receive grants, to the tune of up to $2,500.

Tenured or tenure-track professors who can “demonstrate a long-term commitment to social justice” can also apply for up to $10,000 in grants to support a research project, as long as they can justify how it relates to social justice.

Their university-funded research can “uniquely shape both the university’s efforts to combat inequality and other local, national and global issues,” says the fellowships page.

“Social justice is defined as eradicating systems of power and oppression with the purpose of advancing fairness and equality through the redistribution of resources and opportunities and exalting human dignity and respect,” the application reads.

The funding is consistent with the mission of the institute, according to Lisa Kollins, the institute’s head administrator.

Losing Again, For the Same Reason Jon Ossoff’s loss in Georgia shows that the Democrats have failed to broaden their appeal. Henry Olsen

Democrats are despondent over Tuesday’s loss in the special election for Georgia’s sixth congressional district seat. Though this part of metro Atlanta is historically Republican, the national Democratic leadership had convinced itself that voter dislike of President Trump was enough to pull normally loyal Republicans into the Democratic column. They were wrong, and until they learn the error of their ways, they will continue to lose.

Winning the sixth congressional district was always going to be an uphill climb for Democrats because of the district’s strong GOP tilt. While Trump received a much lower share of the vote there than did 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney, he still beat Hillary Clinton, 48.3 percent to 46.8 percent; most of the remaining votes came from disaffected Republicans and independents who supported Libertarian Gary Johnson or wrote in other candidates, such as conservative Evan McMullin. Getting those voters to support a Democrat was a major challenge.

Democratic nominee Jon Ossoff had to do three things to win: mobilize and turn out Clinton voters; convince some Trump-voting Republicans either to back him or, more plausibly, stay home out of distaste for GOP nominee Karen Handel; and win about 60 percent of voters who had gone for Johnson or McMullin last year. Ossoff clearly accomplished his first task of motivating the Democratic base. Turnout was extraordinarily high for a special election: more than 259,000 people voted, compared with the 331,000 who voted in the presidential election. Ossoff’s 48.1 percent take was higher than Clinton’s showing. Voter apathy was not a problem for Democrats.

Ossoff clearly failed, though, to convince Trump voters to cross over or stay home. One reason Ossoff came so close to winning the district in the first round is that many Republicans, perhaps baffled by the dozen or so candidates, didn’t vote. But in the runoff, motivated by a clear choice between just two candidates and buoyed by millions of dollars in party get-out-the-vote money, GOP voters showed up: turnout in rock-ribbed Republican Cobb County was 79 percent of the proportion in November 2016, on par with turnout in DeKalb County, the bluest part of the district. Though Handel had barely made it to the runoff by winning just 20 percent of the vote in the first round, she easily consolidated her base when the choice came down to “R” or “D.”

Ossoff’s loss ultimately stemmed from his failure at the third task: persuading independents and never-Trumpers that he was the better choice. Third-party voters cast 4.9 percent of the vote in 2016, but Ossoff outperformed Clinton by only 1.3 percent. Since partisan turnout seems to have been about equal, this implies that Ossoff won by only about a quarter of the third-party supporters’ votes. Democrats hoped that he would do better, based on polls showing Trump’s low approval rating (less than 40 percent) among voters in the district. But Trump’s approval ratings were no better last November, and he still won because people who did not like either Trump or Clinton voted for him by a large margin. Apparently these mostly Republican voters remain willing to choose the Trump-backing GOP devil they know over the Democratic devil they don’t, even if they don’t like Trump himself.

Who Does The FBI Work For? There’s no reason to beat around the bush here: what the FBI is claiming is mind-boggling when they claim the shooter had no target in mind. By Ben Domenech

If you work for any extended amount of time in Washington, you are likely to meet people who work within the intelligence and law enforcement communities. You learn to recognize potential sources and those who will never be. The bad sources love to tell stories, so many stories, with at least a veneer of truth. The good sources will tell far fewer stories, but only when it’s important. But the most frequent stories you will hear, from good and bad, are stories of internal dysfunction and irresponsible uses of power. This is not confined to one administration or another, but is a recurring and expected fact of life within the agencies that ought to be focused on securing our liberties and protecting us from threats, foreign and domestic, not spying on an ex, using taxpayer funds for professional gain, or preventing the return of a romantic rival by adding them to a watch list. Once you’ve heard enough of these stories, a realization may dawn on you: these institutions are as dysfunctional as all the others, with their own internal politics, defects, aspiring people, and conflicted forces that often cross the lines of law and ethics in pursuit of their goals. Not losing faith in them at that juncture is a difficult thing indeed.

That brings us to yesterday’s FBI briefing on the shooting targeting Republicans in Alexandria, a briefing that could not be more bizarre in its content and its conclusions. Mollie Hemingway has more:

“The FBI admits that Hodgkinson: vociferously raged against Republicans in online forums, had a piece of paper bearing the names of six members of Congress, was reported for doing target practice outside his home in recent months before moving to Alexandria, had mapped out a trip to the DC area, took multiple photos of the baseball field he would later shoot up, three days after the New York Times mentioned that Republicans practiced baseball at an Alexandria baseball field with little security, lived out of his van at the YMCA directly next door to the baseball field he shot up, legally purchased a rifle in March 2003 and 9 mm handgun “in November 2016,” modified the rifle at some point to accept a detachable magazine and replaced the original stock with a folding stock, rented a storage facility to hide hundreds of rounds of ammunition and additional rifle components, asked “Is this the Republican or Democrat baseball team?” before firing on the Republicans, ran a Google search for information on the “2017 Republican Convention” hours before the shooting, and took photos at high-profile Washington locations, including the east front plaza of the U.S. Capitol and the Dirksen Senate Office.

“We know from other reporting that the list was of six Republican Freedom Caucus members, including Rep. Mo Brooks, who was present at the practice.

“So what does the FBI decide this information means? Well, the takeaway of the briefing was characterized well by the Associated Press headline about it: “FBI: Gunman who shot congressman had no target in mind.” The Associated Press reported the FBI: believes the gunman “had no concrete plan to inflict violence” against Republicans, “had not yet clarified who, if anyone, he planned to target, or why,” believes he may have just “happened upon” the baseball game the morning of June 14, and that the attack appeared “spontaneous,” are unclear on the “context” of Hodgkinson’s note with six names of members of Congress, does not believe that photographs of the baseball field or other sites “represented surveillance of intended targets,” and “painted a picture of a down-on-his-luck man with few future prospects.”

“In fact, USA Today went with “FBI offers portrait of troubled Alexandria shooter with ‘anger management problem’” for their headline, since that’s what the FBI emphasized in the briefing.”

There’s also this incredible tidbit, which somehow has received little to no attention: “Hodgkinson also visited the office of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, whose campaign he had worked on as a volunteer, and was in email contact with the two Democratic senators from his home state.” If this was a shooter who had worked for Ted Cruz and was in contact via email with both of the Senators from Texas, wouldn’t we know about it?

A Government Agency That Produces Real Innovation What does Trump have in common with the National Institutes of Health? Patents. By Mike Kalutkiewicz and Richard L. Ehman

In a budget proposal generating a quick rebuke on Capitol Hill, President Trump calls for a 22% cut to the National Institutes of Health—a move that would take $7.7 billion away from research on diseases like Alzheimer’s, cancer and heart disease. This is an unfortunate request. The NIH is one of our most strategically important federal assets.

Rather than hacking away at the topline budget, the administration should play to the innovative strengths of NIH. This may mean a more mission-oriented approach—using science to help create new sectors and fields. But it could also mean a more market-oriented approach that prioritizes the development of high-quality patents.

In a new Manhattan Institute report, we find that NIH does particularly well in this regard: Its patent portfolio produces 20.4% more market value than average patents, with every $100 million in NIH funding associated with $598 million in downstream private research and development. For some of NIH’s most productive programs, total downstream R&D is as high as $3.3 billion for every $100 million in grant funding.

Patents aren’t everything—scientific knowledge is the main product of public R&D. But slashing away so much potential new technology via broad budget cuts will endanger discoveries that serve as the commercial foundation for new companies, jobs and exports in biotech and the life sciences.

By contrast, Mr. Trump’s budget proposal would provide the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency a 10% increase. If the administration likes Darpa’s impressive record of radical innovation, it should love NIH’s patent hubs, particularly the Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering and the Human Genome Research Institute. These two NIH programs produce twice as many direct and indirect patents as the renowned defense program.

While the research community sometimes considers patents to be a “less pure” derivative of science, patentable discoveries have been an integral part of some of medicine’s most innovative and transformative breakthroughs. Our research also shows that of NIH’s 33 teams of Nobel laureates between 1990 and 2010, more than 75% patented their discoveries at a prolific rate. They weren’t always blockbuster new drugs. Most of the time, new patents represent advancements that push an existing field of research forward, or allow entirely new lines of inquiry to be examined.

The product of a grant from NIH’s Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, the “lab on a chip” is a series of microscopic valves and tubes, which combine to create a “fluidic circuit” that can be used to diagnose infectious diseases quickly and cheaply. It is among the NIH innovations most cited by downstream developers in the life-science sector. The NIH’s Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases invented a tiny under-the-skin sensor that continuously monitors blood-sugar levels in patients with diabetes, a big upgrade in accuracy and patient comfort.

Fostering patentable innovation should appeal to President Trump. He is the only U.S. president other than Abraham Lincoln to have his name on a U.S. patent header. Though he wasn’t the inventor, Trump Taj Mahal Associates’ 1996 patent for a “Proportional payout method for progressive linked gaming machines” makes Mr. Trump, at least indirectly, the second presidential patenter. CONTINUE AT SITE

The Senate’s Health-Care Advance The draft bill contains many conservative victories, which is why the left hates it.

Senate Republicans released their draft bill to repeal and replace ObamaCare on Thursday, and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is hoping for a vote next week. The binary choice now is between pushing past the media and Democratic flak to pass a historic achievement, or wilting under the pressure and ratifying the ObamaCare status quo.

The bill is an imperfect compromise between moderate and conservative Republicans, and it makes pains to accommodate different interests and the Americans, states and businesses that have adapted to ObamaCare over the years. The center-right nature of the details means the Senate won’t be ushering in some free-market utopia. But the reform is a major improvement over the U.S. health-care status quo that will worsen if the bill fails.

The Senate bill works off the American Health Care Act that the House passed in May. Like the House, the legislation replaces ObamaCare’s subsidies with tax credits for people who buy insurance on the individual market, ends Medicaid’s status as an open-ended entitlement, and starts to resolve some of the health-care system’s abiding flaws.

Medicaid was most divisive for Republicans in their months-long internal debate, so the pleasant surprise is that the Senate’s entitlement overhaul is somewhat stronger than the House’s. The program originally meant for poor women, children and the disabled—which ObamaCare opened to able-bodied, working-age adults above the poverty level—would be modernized for the first time. This could become the most consequential social reform since the welfare reconstruction of 1996.

Like the House, the Senate would end the funding formula that rewards states for spending more and transition to block grants, allocated on per capita enrollment. Governors would receive far more regulatory flexibility to manage their programs. Under the final House bill, the grants would max out at the rate of inflation plus one percentage point, starting in 2020.

The Senate waits four years instead of three but pegs the grants to inflation with no adjuster. The danger of delay is that grants become another phony rule like the old Medicare “doc fix” that Congress refused to enforce. But the Senate’s structural changes are more ambitious, and the benefits of those revisions will compound over time.

The Senate also ends ObamaCare’s discrimination between old and new enrollees, which liberals caricature as “rolling back” the Medicaid expansion. The government now pays the whole cost for the expansion population, to encourage Governors to join, but states are only compensated at a national-average 52% match rate for traditional beneficiaries like poor kids. Funding everyone equally—starting in 2021—will cause Governors to find efficiencies and retarget care to the most vulnerable.