Call this a speculation. That's what it is.
As we have heard, "tort reform" has now been included in the Obama administration's package of initiatives. As the Prez indicated in his speech last week, he is in favor of restricting medical malpractice suits in certain locales--yet unspecified--to assess the impact of those limitations. This, of course, was to win a few Republicans. So far, he has won curses, crazies, and a few claps for this particular concept. Claps aren't votes.
Med mal is not device preemption. But the "tort reform" agenda as pushed by Bush/Rove kept that distinction as fuzzy as possible. While the fight was for the industry's agenda spearheaded by Dan Troy, the "face" of tort reform was always doctors and nurses. They look a lot better in newspapers.
Undoubtedly, Congressional Republicans will also mush med mal issues with FDA preemption, which still fully stands in the device arena. And how much stomach will Congress have for amending the Medical Device Act in a way that could reverse Riegel, with or without the O administration's early statements on agency preemption?
I'd say....very, very little.