Washington, DC — Today, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Visiting Lecturer in Law at Yale Law School Andy Pincus and Protect Our Care held a press call to discuss the briefs being filed in the Supreme Court by Senate Democrats and other groups opposing the Trump-Republican lawsuit to overturn the Affordable Care Act. On the call, Senator Schumer, Secretary Sebelius and Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach described the consequences of the lawsuit, particularly in the midst of the coronavirus crisis. They also made clear the devastation that would ensue if health care is ripped away from 20 million Americans as well as protections for 135 million with pre-existing conditions at a time when ensuring people’s health has never been more important. Senator Schumer reaffirmed Senate Democrats’ commitment to protecting Americans’ health care from this disastrous lawsuit and making sure people have access to the care they need at time when they need it most. Oral arguments before the Supreme Court in the case are expected in the fall of 2020.
“Now more than ever, Americans need the Affordable Care Act. And yet, in the middle of this public health and economic emergency, the Trump administration is dedicating time and resources to eliminating health care coverage and pre-existing condition protections for millions of Americans,” said Leader Schumer. “But Senate Democrats won’t give up this fight. We are calling on the highest court of the land to affirm the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act and protect Americans’ care. The facts and the law are indisputably on our side.”
“Taking away health care from millions of Americans in the midst of a pandemic is cruel, economically stupid and dangerous,” said former HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “Despite this lawsuit — and innumerable other efforts to sabotage the Affordable Care Act — the ACA is working to make health care more widely accessible and affordable. We should be working to strengthen it, not undermine it.”
“The nearly three dozen amicus briefs that will be filed today, together with the briefs filed last week by the House of Representatives and California and the other intervening states, demonstrate that there simply are no credible legal grounds for the argument by Texas and the Trump administration,” said Andy Pincus, Partner at Mayer Brown and Visiting Lecturer in Law at Yale Law School. “These briefs also make clear the huge stakes of this case: everyone with a role in the health care system – from patient groups to health care providers to hospitals – is filing in support of the ACA. They all recognize the catastrophic consequences that would result from invalidating the ACA—and especially from doing so while the nation is fighting a pandemic.”
“The single most important issue for Americans in the middle of this crisis is their health care, and yet President Trump is doing everything he can to rip that away from them,” said Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach. “If the president and his Republican allies are successful in repealing the ACA through this lawsuit, 20 million Americans will lose their health insurance, on top of the millions who have already lost their employer-based insurance during the pandemic. Everyone who contracts the coronavirus could now have a pre-existing condition and be at the mercy of their insurance companies who could refuse to pay for needed care. Today’s filings by Senate Democrats, governors and other health care groups reveal the dramatic impacts of the Trump administration’s lawsuit. It’s critical that Americans understand just what’s at stake if this disastrous and irresponsible lawsuit succeeds.”
View the full fact sheet on Trump-Republican lawsuit to overturn the ACA HERE.
If the Affordable Care Act is struck down:
- GONE: Protections for 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions. The uninsured rate will increase by 65 percent.
- GONE: Medicaid expansion, which covers 17 million people.
- GONE: Nearly 12 million seniors will have to pay more for prescription drugs because the Medicare ‘donut hole’ will be reopened.
- GONE: 2.3 million adult children will no longer be able to stay on their parents’ insurance.
- GONE: Insurance companies will be able to charge women 50 percent more than men.
- GONE: Financial assistance that helps 9 million people purchase health care in the marketplace.
- GONE: Key support for rural hospitals. As Americans lose coverage, already struggling hospitals will be hit even harder as their costs increase.