Justice Department says heart of health law unconstitutional

Henrietta Strickland
June 9, 2018

He said the department only refused to defend the pre-existing conditions provision as well as one forbidding insurers from charging people in the same community different rates based on gender, age, health status or other factors.

The Trump administration, however, is seeking to gut two core provisions that guarantee that these folks can get health insurance and that they won't have to pay more for it.

Three attorneys for the government withdrew from the case just minutes before the Justice Department's filing in federal court in Fort Worth, Texas, which signaled an internal rift within the administration over its role in defending USA law, according to University of Michigan Law Professor Nicholas Bagley.

In a brief filed Thursday, the Justice Department sided with Texas and a coalition of other Republican-led states that had filed a suit challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare.

The Trump administration is arguing parts of Obamacare are now unconstitutional.

A coalition of 20 US states sued the federal government in February, claiming the law was no longer constitutional after last year's repeal of the penalty that individuals had to pay for not having insurance.

Sessions defended the unusual decision in a June 7 letter to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan. Last year, Congress repealed the tax associated with the penalty, effective 2019.

These sections of the law, along with the mandate that insurers provide comprehensive coverage, are the bedrock of Obamacare's protections for those with pre-existing conditions.

"This is yet another malicious Republican attack that will undermine the stability of our healthcare system, and could once again mean that you or a loved one are denied healthcare because of a pre-existing condition", said Meredith Kelly, the communications director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC). "This was often the case before the law took effect and would likely be the same should these essential protections be eliminated".

It backs up their contention that the ACA provision requiring most Americans to carry health insurance soon will no longer be constitutional. If granted, the request would also lead to higher premiums for.

Both of these types of policies are expected to have lower premiums, but would cover fewer benefits - making them more attractive to healthier Americans who don't need comprehensive coverage.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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