March 22, 2024

Ahead of ACA Anniversary, Duckworth, Durbin Highlight Record Enrollment and Slam Donald Trump and Republicans for Continuing to Push ACA Repeal

Record 399,000 Illinoisans signed up for health insurance through the ACA marketplace this year


[WASHINGTON, DC]Ahead of the 14th anniversary of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) this Saturday, U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined their Senate Democratic colleagues to tout record-breaking ACA enrollment, highlighting how Democrats have built on the successes of the ACA, and speaking out against Donald Trump threatening to repeal the ACA in a potential second term. 

Trump recently vowed that he would “never give up” on repealing the Affordable Care Act, calling the failure to repeal the ACA during his term “a low point for the Republican party,” and he has continued to double down on those comments.  Meanwhile, Senate Republicans have signaled their openness to repealing the ACA in recent months and Republicans in Congress are fighting to dismantle reproductive care and access to vital preventive care, hike premiums, slash Medicare and Medicaid, reverse recent coverage gains and raise prescription drug costs for the American people.

Today, more people receive health care coverage under the ACA than ever before.  More than 40 million Americans are covered by the ACA's subsidized marketplaces and Medicaid expansion, and a record-breaking 21.3 million people signed up for ACA marketplace coverage during the latest Open Enrollment season.  Nearly 399,000 Illinoisans have enrolled in a marketplace plan, and more than one million Illinoisans are newly enrolled in Medicaid.

“When the Affordable Care Act became law, millions of Americans gained quality, affordable healthcare coverage—and under President Biden, Democrats have worked hard to strengthen and expand it,” said Duckworth.  “Despite a record-breaking 21.3 million sign-ups for coverage through the ACA and millions of Americans saving an average of $800 per year on health insurance, Trump and his Republican Party keep trying to repeal the ACA, eliminate these savings and take away this coverage that has been a gamechanger for those who need it most. Democrats won’t let it happen.  Under President Biden and Democrats’ leadership, the ACA will always be here to stay.”

“Fourteen years ago, I stood alongside President Obama as he signed the ACA into law.  Since then, we have seen record numbers of Americans enroll in affordable, quality health care coverage for themselves and their families.  Unfortunately, congressional Republicans, with Donald Trump leading the charge, have continued their dangerous effort to repeal the law—which would eliminate protections for people with pre-existing conditions, increase prescription drug prices for seniors, and throw young adults off their parents’ health plans.  We cannot let them succeed,” said Durbin.  “On the fourteenth anniversary of the bill, I am joining my Democratic colleagues to reaffirm our commitment to protecting the ACA and warning our Republican counterparts that we will not allow them to strip Americans of their health care.”

Congressional Democrats and President Biden have built on the ACA by further lowering premium costs and prescription drug costs through the landmark Inflation Reduction Act.  The new law has lowered annual premiums for people who buy their own coverage by an average of $2,400 per family and has saved the average 60-year-old couple with a household income of $75,000 approximately $1,900 in monthly premiums for Marketplace coverage.

Under the Trump Administration, Senate Democrats fought back time and again to block Republican attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act.  The consequences of repealing the ACA would touch nearly every household in the country: in addition to approximately 20 million Americans losing coverage, an estimated more than 135 million Americans with pre-existing conditions would lose critical protections, an estimated 49 million seniors would have to pay more for prescription drugs, and insurance companies would not be required to cover preventative care, such as vaccinations, contraception and cancer screenings, and once again impose annual and lifetime limits on benefits and charge women more.