(FamilyRetirementClub.com)- The Trump administration is making another effort to undo former President Barack Obama’s flagship health-care bill, asking the Supreme Court to repeal the Affordable Care Act of 2017.
In a brief filed Thursday night, the administration is arguing that since Obamacare’s individual mandate was struck down in 2017 by Congress, the rest of the law is unconstitutional by extension. The individual mandate used to impose a tax on people who didn’t purchase health insurance.
The two other main provisions of the ACA are a mandate for businesses that have at least 50 workers to provide health insurance, as well as a Medicaid subsidy provided by the federal government.
Noel J. Francisco, the Solicitor General, was joined in the brief by Republican officials in 18 different states. In the brief, he wrote:
“Nothing the 2017 Congress did demonstrates it would have intended the rest of the A.C.A. to continue to operate in the absence of these three integral provisions. The entire A.C.A. thus must fall with the individual mandate.”
And as Ken Paxton, the attorney general in Texas, said in a statement:
“Obamacare has failed, and the sooner it is invalidated, the sooner each state can decide what type of health care system will best provide for those with preexisting conditions, which is the way the Founders intended.”
Not all Republicans are in favor of repealing Obamacare, though — at least not yet. Those in opposition to doing so right now are worried that there is no plan on how to replace the law as of yet.
One Republican strategist who specializes in health policy, Joel White, recently told the New York Times:
“Politically, it’s pretty dumb to be talking about how we need to repeal Obamacare in the middle of a pandemic. We need quick solutions here; we need stuff that we can do tomorrow, because our countrymen are hurting.”
Democrats also criticized this exact point. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said:
“President Trump and the Republican’s campaign to rip away the protections and benefits of the Affordable Care Act in the middle of the coronavirus crisis is an act of unfathomable cruelty. If President Trump gets his way, 130 million Americans with pre-existing conditions will lose the A.C.A.’s lifesaving protections, and 23 million Americans will lose their health coverage entirely.”
The question of how people already on ACA-supported health care plans, and those additional people who are about to apply, would get coverage in the absence of the law. Roughly 27 million people could have lost health coverage from their employers due to layoffs this year.
According to the federal government, approximately 487,000 people signed up with the website HealthCare.gov after they lost coverage from their workplace this year. That represents a 46% increase year over year.
While the Trump administration has repeatedly said it would provide protections for people with pre-existing conditions, they haven’t released a plan for how they would do that yet, leaving many to wonder, worry and hope that they aren’t left in the dark.