Trump Pledge to Repeal Obamacare Will Trigger Insurance Marketplace Chaos and Political Backlash

Posted Dec. 28, 2016

MP3 Interview with Wendell Potter, author, consultant, and former health insurance industry executive, conducted by Scott Harris


Ever since the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, known widely as Obamacare, the Republican party has staged continuous rhetorical attacks on the health care law – and held more than 60 votes to repeal the legislation. Now with the election of Donald Trump to the White House, and Republicans maintaining control of both the House and Senate, the party will now be in position to destroy the legislation, that for all its flaws, has brought health insurance to more than 20 million Americans, many of them for the first time.

The Affordable Care Act has reduced the number of uninsured Americans, although some 30 million still don't have coverage. ACA provisions include Medicaid expansion, Health Insurance Marketplace coverage, and changes in private insurance that allows young adults to stay on their parent’s health insurance plans and require plans to cover people with pre-existing health conditions.

While Republicans are eager to repeal Obamacare and promise to replace it, the GOP has no viable public proposals to do so. Trump says he would permit health insurance companies to sell policies across state lines, encourage more people to enroll in health savings accounts and give states almost total control over Medicaid through block grants. But none of these ideas will make up for the loss of subsidies for working families that would be lost under the ACA, and the rise of health care costs will continue unchecked. Between The Lines Scott Harris spoke with Wendell Potter, a former health insurance industry executive and bestselling author, who discusses the health insurance market chaos and political fallout that he says will likely result if Trump and the Republicans carry out their pledge to repeal Obamacare.

Wendell Potter is best-selling author of "Deadly Spin," and "Nation on the Take." For more information, visit

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