June 30, 2020

Duckworth, Durbin, Entire Senate Dem Caucus To Trump Administration: Don’t Rip Away Health Care For Millions During Public Health Crisis


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – As the Trump Administration moves full-steam ahead to dismantle the Affordable Care Act that provides coverage for millions of Americans, U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined Senator Jon Tester (D-MT) and the entire Senate Democratic Caucus today to introduce a resolution condemning the Administration’s reckless effort, demanding the Department of Justice (DOJ) to defend existing law in court and halt its efforts to repeal the health care protections for millions – including 133 million Americans, including five million Illinoisans, with pre-existing conditions— in the middle of a public health emergency.

“Ripping health care away from millions of Americans and hundreds of thousands of Illinoisans – in the midst of one of the greatest public health challenges we’ve ever faced – would be devastating and dangerous,” Durbin said. “This effort by the Trump Administration is stunning, especially when they have offered no alternative to the Affordable Care Act. I’m proud to join with my Democratic colleagues to condemn their actions and urge the President to reconsider his reckless course of action.”

“Trump has lied to the American people for years, talking out of both sides of his mouth by saying he will protect coverage for people with preexisting conditions while actively working to scrap the law that does exactly that,” Duckworth said. “By trying to eliminate those protections and rip healthcare away from millions of Americans in the middle of a public health crisis which he is horribly mismanaging is not only dishonest, it’s cruel. I’m proud to join my Democratic colleagues in condemning this reckless decision and will keep working to uphold these protections for the millions of Americans who deserve access to affordable, quality healthcare coverage.”

Last week, the DOJ and a group of Republican Attorneys General submitted a brief to the U.S. Supreme Court urging it to invalidate the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and pull the rug out from underneath the millions of Americans with pre-existing conditions who depend on the law for health care coverage. If the Supreme Court agrees and overturns the ACA, nearly one million Illinoisans could lose their health insurance coverage.

The resolution urges DOJ to reverse its position and instead protect the millions of people who rely on the ACA for health care coverage amid the COVID-19 pandemic that has infected more than 2.5 million Americans and killed more than 125,000.

The resolution is also backed by Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Tim Kaine (D-VA), Mark Warner (D-VA), Doug Jones (D-AL), Tina Smith (D-MN), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Jack Reed (D-RI), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Tom Carper of (D-DE), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Ed Markey (D-MA), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Patty Murray (D-WA), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Gary Peters (D-MI), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Angus King (I-ME), Tom Udall (D-NM), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Chris Coons (D-DE), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Bob Casey (D-PA), Chuck Schumer (D-NY).

The full resolution is available here.