Interest Groups and Health Care Reform Across the United States
Universal health care was on the national political agenda for
nearly a hundred years until a comprehensive (but not universal)
health care reform bill supported by President Obama passed in
2010. The most common explanation for the failure of past reform
efforts is that special interests were continually able to block
reform by lobbying lawmakers. Yet, beginning in the 1970s,
accelerating with the failure of the Clinton health care plan, and
continuing through the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010,
health policy reform was alive and well at the state level.
Interest Groups and Health Care Reformacross the
United States assesses the impact of interest groups to
determine if collectively they are capable of shaping policy in
their own interests or whether they influence policy only at the
margins. What can this tell us about the true power of interest
groups in this policy arena? The fact that state governments took
action in health policy in spite of opposing interests, where the
national government could not, offers a compelling puzzle that will
be of special interest to scholars and students of public policy,
health policy, and state politics.
Subjects: Political Science, Health Sciences
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