The Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, is no longer new. But the radioactive aura of the law is still nowhere near its half-life. The health-care reform, initially signed into law in 2010, has become one of the hottest political issues of the era. Many Republicans are disgusted with the law, which includes an individual mandate requiring everyone to have insurance. Democrats, on the other hand, see it as a grand compromise. It’s a stepping stone, some think, on the way to a single-payer system.
Despite how you feel about it, it’s the law of the land. And it has withstood multiple lawsuits and trips to the Supreme Court. It was also an important factor in our national elections in 2010, 2012, and 2016. President Donald Trump, whose election is being cast as a rebuke to the Obama years, has promised to make a fast repeal one of the top items on his agenda.
But Republicans have run into some trouble. If they repeal the law, as many as 30 million people could lose insurance coverage. But if they don’t, they’re breaking a major campaign promise. It’s quite the political pickle.
Some states (and therefore Americans) stand to lose more than others if the law is repealed. To figure out which ones, WalletHub dug into the numbers. Citing a Congressional Budget Office report, WalletHub’s report says the ranks of the uninsured could rocket to as many as 32 million by 2026. And again, some states would feel the pinch more than others.
“In order to assess repeal’s impact on Americans based on where they live, WalletHub’s analysts compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across seven key indicators of both economic and coverage losses,” the report says. “Our data set ranges from ‘growth in uninsured population by 2019 post-ACA repeal’ to ‘potential economic impact due to repeal of premium tax credits and Medicaid expansion (2019 to 2023).’”
In terms of which states would be the most affected by a repeal of the Affordable Care Act, here are the top 10.