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Washington, DC — Today, Attorney General Keith Ellison (D-MN), former Acting CMS Administrator Andy Slavitt and Andy Pincus, who has argued more than 30 cases before the Supreme Court, joined Protect Our Care to discuss California v. Texas, the Trump-Republican lawsuit to terminate the Affordable Care Act. Tomorrow, November 10, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the lawsuit that, if successful, would overturn the entire ACA, rip health care away from over 20 million Americans and end protections for 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions — all during the worst public health crisis in a century. This comes after Donald Trump and Senate Republicans rushed through the confirmation process to install a handpicked anti-ACA justice on the Supreme Court who they hope will help them accomplish what they couldn’t do legislatively — completely dismantle the ACA. 

“We are fighting as hard as we can to make sure an illness doesn’t mean financial ruin and bankruptcy,” said Attorney General Keith Ellison (D-MN). “We’re in this fight. We’re here to defend this law, and we hope the Supreme Court does the right thing and carries out the will of the people.”

“We have so many Americans who run for office because of the ACA, vote because of the ACA and that’s because their lives were profoundly impacted by the ACA,” said former Acting CMS Administrator Andy Slavitt. “The court has to take real stock of a dramatic impact this case would have on the country. I’d venture to say a near collapse from a health care and economic standpoint.”

“The argument advanced by Texas and the Trump Administration—that the entire ACA is invalid because Congress zeroed out the mandate penalty—has been discredited by legal scholars from across the political spectrum, including some of the ACA’s harshest critics,” said Andy Pincus, who has argued more than 30 cases before the Supreme Court. “It is contrary to decades of Supreme Court decisions. It is contrary to common sense. And, if adopted, it would leave more than 23 million Americans without access to healthcare and destabilize the Nation’s healthcare system—all during a pandemic that has already killed nearly 250,000 Americans.”

“The thing is, my disease is not going to stop if the ACA is repealed. The pandemic is not going to stop if the ACA is repealed. Instead, people like me will just have to pay more. Our families will just have to pay more to get care,” said Jessica Intermill, a Minnesotan with rheumatoid arthritis. “If there is no ACA and my insurance company kicks me off, the drug company is going to send me the $54,000 bill [for my medication]. That’s more than twice my mortgage. I don’t know how to pay for it.”

“Republicans have waged a decade-long battle to undermine the ACA and rip health care coverage from Americans,” said Protect Our Care Chair Leslie Dach. “Now, the Trump administration is arguing before the Supreme Court that the entire law should be overturned. This lawsuit is just another attempt from Republicans to remove protections for people with pre-existing conditions with no plan to help them get coverage. Overturning the ACA would throw our entire health care system into chaos, leaving millions of Americans without health care coverage during a global pandemic.”