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Medi-Cal Recipients Statewide Would Feel The Pain Of Obamacare Repeal

Above: Doctor Leonid Basovich, left, examines Medi-Cal patient Michael Epps, at the WellSpace Clinic in Sacramento, Calif., Feb 2016.

Aired 1/6/17 on KPBS News.

A proposed repeal of Obamacare would devastate the Medi-Cal program, and wouldn't just affect people in Democratic strongholds, according to the California Budget & Policy Center

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Medi-Cal Fact Sheet

Medi-Cal Fact Sheet

A report that looks out how repealing Obamacare will effect Medical enrollment.

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Republicans in Congress have promised to repeal Obamacare. And if they do so, Medi-Cal, California's health program for the poor, will suffer a massive body blow.

The California Budget & Policy Center said it won't only be people in Democratic strongholds who will feel the pain.

A report from the non-partisan group, which lists Medi-Cal enrollment by county and as a percentage of each county's population, shows the effects will be felt statewide.

Scott Graves, the center's director of research, said hundreds of thousands of those who would lose coverage live in districts represented by Republicans in the House of Representatives.

And that, said Graves, puts lawmakers in a tough spot.

“A lot of Republicans aren’t really going to be happy about having to repeal the Affordable Care Act because it’s going to get them in hot water with their constituents," Graves said.

For instance, Graves' report reveals 55 percent of people who live in Tulare County have Medi-Cal coverage. That’s the highest percentage of any county in California. Tulare County is represented by three Republicans in Congress.

Graves said if Obamacare is repealed, California will lose $15 billion a year in federal funds that the state has used to expand the Medi-Cal program.

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