The looming demise of Obamacare’s individual mandate is spurring talks in a handful of blue states about enacting their own coverage requirements, as state officials and health care advocates fear repeal will roil their insurance markets.
Republicans in Congress are poised to kill off the individual mandate in their sweeping tax overhaul, knocking out one of Obamacare's most unpopular features — but one that health experts have said is essential to making the law's insurance marketplaces function.
Blue state officials, who have been working to protect their insurance markets from the Trump administration's efforts to dismantle the health law, are beginning to grapple with strategies for preserving coverage. Those officials — in California, Connecticut, New Jersey and elsewhere — aren't ruling out a state-level requirement that residents must obtain health insurance.
But even in the most Obamacare-friendly states, trying to implement an individual mandate could be politically risky, particularly in an election year.