Baker Says Trump Failed To Talk To States Before Signing Health Insurance Order

Oct 12, 2017

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker stopped short Thursday of criticizing President Trump's executive order on health care. But Baker said he does not believe the process included input from states.

The governor said his administration is still reviewing the order.

"My primary objective is going to be to make sure that, in a state that covers 97 percent of its people... that this doesn't negatively affect the coverage people in Massachusetts have or their ability to access care," said Baker, after an unrelated event in Springfield.

Trump's executive order could, among other things, allow individuals and businesses to buy cheaper health insurance plans that offer less coverage than mandated by the affordable care act.

Baker was direct in his criticism of the process that led to Trump's order, which he contrasted with his own administration's efforts to seek comments from local leaders before issuing policies affecting cities and towns.

"This executive order, as I understand it, has significant consequences for states," he said. "I'm not aware, at this point, that states were a big part of the conversation before it was issued."

Asked for comment, a White House spokesperson did not dispute Baker's claim. But he said "relevant agencies are going to engage in rule-making through the standard process that will involve a robust opportunity for the public to comment."