Lauren Fox

Lauren Fox is a reporter at Talking Points Memo.

Articles by Lauren

A group of Republican governors met with Republican members of the Senate Finance Committee on Thursday, and some expressed concerns about the number of people who could lose insurance once GOP lawmakers repeal the Affordable Care Act.

One of the top concerns is what will happen to individuals who became eligible for Medicaid with its expansion under Obamacare. The Senate's No. 2 Republican, however, promised that no one who got coverage under Medicaid expansion will lose it.

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Deporting millions of undocumented immigrants and building a wall with Mexico were paramount to President-elect Donald Trump's campaign so as the inauguration looms, the immigrant community is on edge as millions await their fates.

Over the weekend, activists gathered across the country from Chicago to Washington, D.C., to speak out against the restrictionist immigration policies Trump pushed on the campaign trail, but advocates who spoke with TPM this week said they remain in the dark about what Trump and his team plan to do in the upcoming months.

"The transition team has been remarkably closed lips about what their plans are," said Ali Noorani, the executive director of the National Immigration Forum. "I think whether it is from the President-elect or the transition team, the details have been few and far between. My experience with the Obama team is they didn’t make any decisions with us in the room, but they were definitely entertaining a host of perspectives."

Noorani said he's not been privy to any of those meetings with the Trump team.

"I am sure there are parts of the Trump transition team who have been meeting with those who want to end immigration to the US as we know it," he said.

At the top of the list of concerns is fear of what could become of the more than 700,000 young people who turned over personal information to the government in the last couple of years to get DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) status, a program that has allowed people who came to the U.S. as children to get legal status, but that is just the tip of the iceberg.

"Assuming that Trump lets the radical right wing of the Republican Party drive his immigration policy, we’re bracing for the worst," Frank Sharry, the founder and executive director of America’s Voice, an immigration reform group, told TPM.

Already more than 800 congregations across the country have expressed interest in opening up their churches to immigrants looking for sanctuary and advocates are reissuing programs to help immigrants know their rights if they are pulled over or present for a deportation raid, advocates told TPM.

“There is a lot of uncertainty but also a lot of determination to protect each other,” said Julieta Garibay, the deputy advocacy director for United We Dream. Here are the biggest unanswered questions about Trump's nascent immigration policy:

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Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) is having conversations with "four or five" Democrats he hopes will help him work toward a replacement for the Affordable Care Act, but he said that Democrats are still waiting to see if Republicans will get their act together before signing on.

"We have to show that we have our act together before they're going to risk it," Cassidy told reporters. "I'm okay with that."

Cassidy said he didn't know if other colleagues were trying to reach across the aisle at this point.

"I want this to be an American solution, not a Republican solution," he said. "I say that not rhetorically, but the only major social programs that have worked in our country have been bipartisan, and we need this to be bipartisan."

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Ben Carson, Trump's pick for HUD Secretary, refused to say that Trump and his family wouldn't profit from HUD.

In a tough line of questioning from Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Carson said he was going to let "morals" dictate his decision making process not favors, but that didn't exactly eliminate the opportunity for Trump to benefit.

"Can you just assure us that one dollar with go to benefit the president elect or his family?" Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) began her line of questioning with Carson.

Warren– who has been a leading voice on Capitol Hill to force President-elect Trump to divest from his business interests– was making a point.

"It will not be my intention," Carson tried to respond. "I will manage things in a way that benefits the American people.That is going to be the goal."

Carson, however, said that if the program is good enough, he wouldn't mind that Trump's family was profiting.

"If there happens to be an extraordinarily good program that is working for millions of people and it turns out that someone that you targeted is going to gain $10 from it, am I going to say 'no the rest of you Americans can't have it? ' No, I think probably logic and common sense would be the best way," Carson said.

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