Trachtman's research focuses on the politics of health policy and climate policy, focusing on the state level. Trachtman's research is informed by prior work in health policy at the Congressional Budget Office, and prior work in energy policy at Southern California Edison. Overarching themes in Trachtman's research include illuminating the political barriers to passing effective policy – and thinking about how they can be surmounted. Trachtman's work in health politics examines, among other questions, how partisanship influences uptake behavior in the ACA marketplaces, as well as the implications of partisan uptake for premiums on the marketplaces. Trachtman's work in climate politics investigates both the factors that influence state policy choices, as well as the political feedback effects of these policy decisions.
Develops theory to explain state-level Republican policies undermining ACA marketplaces, connecting state policy to national politics through a policy feedback mechanism. Presents evidence from three areas of marketplace implementation: navigator laws, transitional plan termination, and rating area configurations.
Argues that policy feedback effects are particularly important in considering designs of state level climate and energy policies. Introduces mechanisms of feedback for a several state policy instruments, and makes policy recommendations based on those mechanisms.
Connects Republican under-enrollment to premium growth on the ACA marketplaces through adverse selection. Presents evidence that premiums increased at a faster rate from 2014 to 2017 in areas with more Republican voters.
Estimates the factors predictive of state-level climate policy adoption across four areas: renewable portfolio standards, energy efficiency, distributed generation, and severance taxes on oil and gas extraction.
Presents evidence that Republicans were less likely than Democrats to enroll in ACA marketplace insurance, but de-emphasizing the role of the government can close the partisan enrollment gap.
Estimates the effect of ACA marketplace competition on marketplace prices. Finds that premiums increased more sharply in areas with less insurer competition.