Governor Baker asks US Senate not to undermine Massachusetts’ success
Republican Governor Charlie Baker is again warning that House GOP efforts to restructure the American health care system would hurt Massachusetts.
“The recently passed American Health Care Act by the House of Representatives poses a significant threat to Massachusetts, from both fiscal and health care coverage perspectives,” he wrote in a Friday letter to top US senators on relevant committees, as the legislation is poised to come before them.
“There is no question that this bill would result in a substantial loss of federal revenues to the state and loss of health coverage for thousands of currently insured individuals.
If this bill is enacted, thousands will lose their health care coverage in the first year, and Massachusetts will lose approximately $1 billion in revenues starting in 2020,” wrote Baker, a former health insurance executive.
He urged the Senate not to pass any bill that would threaten to take away people’s health care or make it more unaffordable for Americans.
Baker, who has said he did not vote for Trump and has frequently kept the White House at arm’s length, previously expressed similar sentiments. He’s emphasized his hope that the federal government not take any actions that would undermine Massachusetts’ first-in-the-nation commitment to universal health care coverage.
The Baker administration opposed the House-passed health measure, which aims to repeal and replace president Barack Obama’s overhaul.
The state receives billions in federal aid for MassHealth, the joint state-federal Medicaid health program for poor and disabled people in Massachusetts.
Health care spending makes up the single largest chunk of the state budget, and a reduction in reimbursements from the federal government, or a restructuring of the program, could blow in hole in the spending plan.