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The head of Health and Human Services faced backlash on social media Wednesday after joking that a T-shirt promoting universal healthcare was “the scariest Halloween costume.”

Seema Verma, the administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (which falls under the HHS), tweeted an image of a “Medicare for All” T-shirt on Halloween, writing in the caption, “This year’s scariest Halloween costume goes to…”

The non-partisan health research foundation Commonwealth Fund reports that the rate of uninsured people between ages 19 and 64 jumped from 12.7 percent in 2016 to 15.5 percent in 2018. As HuffPost reported, the loss of healthcare for more than 4 million people can be attributed to “the Trump administration’s efforts to undermine the Affordable Care Act.”

Verma followed up with tweets about her agency’s efforts to “strengthen Medicare” and further insistence that single-payer national health insurance would be a “bad idea.”

Verma’s original tweet was met with strong criticism on Twitter from people who argued that access to universal healthcare isn’t a joking matter—and isn’t scary.

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H/T HuffPost

Kris Seavers

Kris Seavers

Kris Seavers is the Evening Editor for the Daily Dot, where she covers breaking news, politics, and LGBTQ issues. Her work has appeared in Central Texas publications, including Austin Monthly and San Antonio Magazine, and on NPR.