President Donald Trumps administration is appealing to the Supreme Court on the Affordable Care Act, asking justices to strike down the healthcare regulations.
Two federal courts have ruled that the acts individual mandate, which required people who did not have health insurance to pay a fine, violated the U.S. Constitution. The mandate, the Trump administration is arguing, is not severable from the rest of the act, also known as the ACA, or Obamacare.
“The individual mandate cannot be severed from the remainder of the ACA,” Solicitor General Noel Francisco wrote in a new court filing (pdf). “The entire ACA thus must fall with the individual mandate.”
The Department of Justice filed the legal brief in support of states that are seeking to have Obamacare entirely struck down.
The states include Texas, Florida, Kansas, South Dakota, and West Virginia.
California, Hawaii, Minnesota, and other states are seeking to have the act upheld.
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, a Democrat, said in a statement that the ACA “has been life-changing and now through this pandemic, we can all see the value in having greater access to quality healthcare at affordable prices.”
“Now is not the time to rip away our best tool to address very real and very deadly health disparities in our communities,” he added.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said the Trump administrations efforts have no legal justification.
“If President Trump gets his way, 130 million Americans with pre-existing conditions will lose the ACAs lifesaving protections and 23 million Americans will lose their health coverage entirely,” she said in a statement.
Pelosi and House Democrats unveiled legislation this week to expand the act. A vote on the package is scheduled for Monday.
Trump told reporters at the White House last month that “Obamacare is a disaster, but weve run it very well.
“And weve made it barely acceptable. It was a disaster under President Obama, and its very bad healthcare. What we want to do is terminate it and give great healthcare. And well have great healthcare, including preexisting conditions—100 percent preexisting conditions,” he added.