Having failed to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) through legislative means, the Trump administration has ordered the Department of Justice not to defend the ACA against a frivolous lawsuit from GOP-controlled states. In February of 2018, Texas and 19 other GOP-controlled states filed a suit with a Texas court against the legality of key provisions in the ACA, including consumer protections for non-elderly Americans with preexisting conditions.
Legal experts from across the political spectrum agreed the red states’ suit was on shaky legal ground. However, on June 7, the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a brief in support of the suit, urging the court to invalidate many of the ACA’s consumer protections. The announcement creates even more uncertainty about the individual insurance markets in a year when insurers are already hiking up premiums in response to GOP interference with the healthcare law. Troublingly, the DOJ’s actions also reflect the Trump administration’s willingness to use the judiciary to attack a law passed by Congress, signed by a president, and upheld by the Supreme Court. In fact, the DOJ’s actions are so egregious that the three career DOJ attorneys involved in the case withdrew in protest hours before the final brief was filed. Additionally, sixteen Democratic-led states and DC have filed a countersuit in defense of the ACA.
Call Gov. Walker to let him know tThe ACA is the law of the land, and this lawsuit threatens the stability of the insurance markets and could undo protections for people with preexisting conditions.