Trump "going for the rest" of Obamacare
By Keya Vakil
April 26, 2019

President Trump made waves on Friday by indicating that he was once again going to target Obamacare.

Appearing at the NRA Convention in Indianapolis, Trump boasted about eliminating the individual mandate and indicated he was once again targeting the entire Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Trump’s on-again off-again obsession with repealing Obamacare has been well documented, as have the potentially catastrophic national implications.

What would it mean for Virginia?

After Democrats flipped 15 seats in the 2017 House of Delegates elections, the Commonwealth finally expanded Medicaid access in 2018. Since then, more than 266,000 Virginians have signed up for Medicaid, according to the state’s Department of Medical Assistance Services.

That’s only a fraction of the total number of Virginians who stand to lose their healthcare, however.

According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, as many as 685,000 Virginians would lose their healthcare if Trump succeeds in eliminating the ACA.

Obamacare repeal would also cost the state $18 billion in federal healthcare spending from 2019-2028 and it would also rattle the Virginia economy. According to the Economic Policy Institute, a non-profit think tank, if the Trump administration successfully repealed Obamacare, Virginia would see the loss of over 10,000 healthcare-related jobs.

It remains to be seen if Trump’s words are anything more than bluster. He’s previously backed down after similar declarations of going after Obamacare, but per Trump’s demands, the Justice Department is currently pushing to have the entire law invalidated.

A group of 22 states, including Virginia, is opposing the Department of Justice’s efforts in that lawsuit.

In the balance hangs the healthcare of over half-a-million Virginians.

  • Keya Vakil

    Keya Vakil is the deputy political editor at COURIER. He previously worked as a researcher in the film industry and dabbled in the political world.

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