November 30, 2016

Harvard prof warns of Obamacare repeal, other Trump vengeance on Mass.

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Antonio Caban / State House News Service

Former state Democratic Party chair Philip Johnston, left, and Republican Rep. Geoff Diehl, who supported President-elect Donald Trump, share different takes on the future of Affordable Care Act.

BOSTON — Massachusetts must prepare for the possibility that Congress could wipe away the Affordable Care Act and leave the issue of health insurance legislation to the states, a central tenet of President-elect Donald Trump’s platform.

That was the message Tuesday, Nov. 29, from Robert Blendon, a Harvard health policy professor and director of the Harvard Opinion Research Program, as well as former state Democratic Party chairman Philip Johnston and Trump-backing Republican Rep. Geoff Diehl.

The three agreed that while Trump ran on the promise of a “full repeal” of the ACA, very little is known about exactly how Trump will dismantle the federal health insurance law or whether his administration would propose or support a replacement.

“I think that Massachusetts is likely to be protected” because of the health care law the state passed in 2006, Johnston said during a panel discussion hosted by the Massachusetts Health Policy Forum before adding, “If there’s one thing we know about Trump it’s that he believes in revenge and Charlie Baker was not a Trump supporter and … this is not a state that’s Trump-friendly. … I would be a little bit nervous about Massachusetts.”


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