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Red-state changes could strengthen ACA, Medicaid

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin
Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin. Photo: Bill Pugliano / Getty Images

By making their Affordable Care Act marketplaces and Medicaid programs more conservative, the leaders of several red states may actually strengthen the ACA and Medicaid by creating a stronger Republican constituency for both programs.

The bottom line: As they make a series of changes — through waivers and other means — to swing the programs to the right, those state leaders are building a broader political base for the programs in red states. That could make ACA repeal and Medicaid cuts an even tougher sell in the future than it is now.