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Victory! U.S. Supreme Court Rules in Favor of ACA, Democratic Attorneys General

June 17, 2021

Court Deals Huge Blow to Republican AGs Looking to Strip Health Care Away from Millions During Pandemic  


WASHINGTON, D.C
.— The U.S. Supreme Court ruled with 21 Democratic Attorneys General to uphold the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and protect health care for millions of Americans, handing the Republican Attorneys General a huge blow in their effort to strip health care from millions of Americans.


Since 2018, indicted Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and 17 other Republican Attorneys General have waged war on the Affordable Care Act in an attempt to make it more difficult to access health care. The state of California was the first state to push back against this effort, with 20 other states joining the fight. The decision today in California v. Texas emphasizes the key role Democratic Attorneys General played in defending the rights of Americans, including access to health care, the right to vote, freedom from discrimination, and other fundamental rights.


Several members of the Democratic Attorneys General Association (DAGA) held a press briefing responding to the decisive victory. Participating Democratic AGs included DAGA Co-Chair Nevada AG Aaron Ford, New York AG Tish James, Washington AG Bob Ferguson, Virginia AG Mark Herring, and Wisconsin AG Josh Kaul. The recording of the video can be watched
here.

 

DAGA Co-Chair Massachusetts AG Maura Healey


“For more than a decade, the Affordable Care Act has transformed our healthcare system by expanding coverage and saving lives. Today’s decision is a huge win for Massachusetts, our country, and our values, and a moment for all of us to build on our progress and continue making health care work better for everyone. We’re committed to partnering with our colleagues to defend this critical law against challenges from Republicans seeking to undermine the ability of working families to access the care they need.”


DAGA Co-Chair Nevada AG Aaron Ford


“The Affordable Care Act is a critical lifeline to Nevada families and families all over the country, which is why my office made it a priority to defend this important law. Nevadans, I have always promised to defend your rights to health care, and today you are seeing the results of this promise. The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling protects millions of Americans and the hundreds of thousands of Nevada families depending on the Affordable Care Act for access to quality and affordable healthcare. I could not be more proud of what we have accomplished today.”


California AG Rob Bonta


“Today’s decision affirms, once again and hopefully for the last time, that the ACA is the law of the land. Americans know health coverage can mean the difference between life and death, so families across the country should rest easy tonight knowing their healthcare is safe. No one should live in fear of being denied the lifesaving care they are entitled to, especially as our nation continues to battle the COVID-19 pandemic. Today’s decision is a victory for each and every American, our nation’s healthcare, and the rule of law.”


Colorado AG Phil Weiser


“Once again, the U.S. Supreme Court has kept the Affordable Care Act in place. The first action I took as Colorado attorney general was to join with other states in defending the ACA in this case. I did so because, time and time again, Coloradans throughout the state have shared with me their concerns about having access to affordable healthcare. Despite repeated attacks, we can now celebrate that the ACA is still the law of the land.


“Because of the ACA, 700,000 Coloradans with pre-existing conditions, like cancer or diabetes, have access to healthcare, as do 400,000 more because of the Medicaid expansion. During the past year, the COVID-19 health emergency has highlighted just how crucial access health care is to Coloradans who faced health and financial hardships.


“As attorney general, I am committed to fighting for access to healthcare, lowering the price of prescription drugs, and supporting enhanced mental health treatment and service opportunities.”


Connecticut AG William Tong


“SCOTUS just upheld the ACA, in a huge win for CT families. The ACA has been a cornerstone of our healthcare system granting patient protections that lowered the cost of healthcare for cancer survivors, allowed young adults to stay on their parents’ plans and expanded Medicaid.”


Delaware AG Kathy Jennings


“Democratic attorneys general fought like hell to preserve the ACA and the health care access it provides for millions of Americans — and thousands of Delawareans — who rely on the exchange, on expanded Medicaid, and on rules that ensure health care access for young adults and people with pre-existing conditions.  Today, we won that fight with a decisive ruling from the Supreme Court.  This is now the third Supreme Court ruling upholding the ACA, and the message should be clear: we won’t back down.”


District of Columbia AG Karl Racine


“This is a huge victory for the millions of Americans & thousands of DC residents who depend on the ACA for life-saving, affordable health coverage. Esp. during the pandemic, the ACA has given certainty to so many that they can get quality health coverage when they most need it.”


“And the Court’s decision makes clear the law is here to stay. It’s time to stop the legal challenges, which have been soundly rejected, and protect and expand access to health care for children with disabilities, seniors in nursing homes & Americans with preexisting conditions.”


Illinois AG Kwame Raoul


“The COVID-19 pandemic amplified the inequity in our nation’s health care system & highlighted the urgent need for all Americans to have access to quality health care coverage. I am grateful that the millions of Americans who rely on the #ACA will continue to receive its benefits.”


“As a cancer survivor, I know firsthand the importance of reliable, quality health care coverage. I will continue to work to ensure all Illinois residents can have the same peace of mind.”


Maine AG Aaron Frey


“Today’s Supreme Court ruling is a victory for all Americans, especially those who would not have health insurance if not for the Affordable Care Act. Upholding the Affordable Care Act was the only legally and constitutionally sound option, as this case was built on arguments which were without merit. The Affordable Care Act has been the law of the land for more than a decade, and it is past time for ideologically motivated individuals and organizations to stop trying to strip health care from millions of people.”


Maryland AG Brian Frosh


“The ACA has provided millions of Americans with access to health insurance, including hundreds of thousands in MD. We will never stop defending it and defending those who depend on the ACA for coverage.”


Michigan AG Dana Nessel


“I am proud to be among the 20 attorneys general who fought to defend the Affordable Care Act and applaud this ruling alongside the millions of people who have worried about their benefits being stripped away. This decision from the United States Supreme Court rejecting the challenge to the ACA ensures the Act remains in place to protect the health and lives of millions of Americans by providing coverage and access to comprehensive treatments. In Michigan, that includes more than 1.7 million people with pre-existing conditions, more than 900,000 covered through Medicaid expansion, and more than 70,000 young adults on their parents’ coverage.”


New Jersey AG Gurbir Grewal


“We’ve scored a big win for healthcare! With Affordable Care Act enrollment at an all time high, SCOTUS has agreed with us & rejected another meritless lawsuit by Texas & other States. Access to affordable healthcare for hundreds of thousands in NJ is safe.”


New York AG Tish James


“The Affordable Care Act has provided countless protections to Americans across the nation over the last decade, and despite Republican-led efforts to strip health coverage away from millions of Americans, the highest court in the land, again, today rejected those efforts. For the third time, the Supreme Court has denied Republican attempts to dismantle the ACA. This means that those with preexisting conditions will not be denied coverage, that seniors will not be charged more for prescription drugs, that young people can stay on a parent’s plan, and that millions more will be able to rely on quality, affordable health care. Today’s decision is a victory that all Americans should celebrate, but Democratic attorneys general will continue to remain vigilant against any efforts to further undermine the law and strip Americans of their right to health care.”


North Carolina AG Josh Stein


“Thanks to the Supreme Court’s decision, hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians will get to keep their access to life-saving health care. The past 15 months have made undeniably clear that having access to affordable, quality health care is a matter of life and death. The Supreme Court was right to rule to protect the ACA, thereby protecting health care for millions of Americans. I’m proud to have been a part of this team defending people’s basic right of health care, and I will continue to fight until every North Carolinian can get the care they need. This has been a long fight, but we won and the ACA is still the law of the land.”


Oregon AG Ellen Rosenblum


“For the past decade, the health care of millions of Americans has been in legal jeopardy. With today’s ruling, the Supreme Court has finally put this issue to rest. If the last federal administration and the states fighting the ACA had had their way, millions upon millions of Americans, including many Oregonians, would have been left scrambling for health care.”


“I’m proud of the hard work of the coalition of states that worked together to make sure this system was not dismantled.”


Pennsylvania AG Josh Shapiro


“Obamacare is the law of the land — yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Once again, we’ve defended health care for millions of Americans. Proud to have stood with my fellow Democratic AGs in this fight.”


Rhode Island AG Peter Neronha


“Today’s decision by SCOTUS to reject a challenge to the Affordable Care Act preserves heath care insurance for millions of Americans & is a win for RI.”


Vermont AG TJ Donovan


“I’m proud to be a part of the team of AGs who defended the Affordable Care Act when the Trump Administration failed to do so.”


“Access to health care is a right–not a privilege–and I will continue to defend it.”


Virginia AG Mark Herring


“Today’s decision is a massive win for every single Virginian and every single American. This lawsuit was no more than a thinly veiled political attack from the start, forcing millions to live in fear that their healthcare could be ripped away from them at any moment,” said Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring. “It is unconscionable that Trump and his Republican allies played politics with human lives, especially as a global pandemic ravaged our country, killing 600,000 Americans – but the threat of healthcare loss is now gone.


“I am incredibly proud to have played a role in defending the Affordable Care Act, ensuring that it remains the law of the land. Everyone deserves access to quality, affordable healthcare no matter who they are, what their medical history is, their employment status, or what financial background they have.”


Washington AG Bob Ferguson


“Thanks to today’s Supreme Court victory, hundreds of thousands of Washingtonians get to keep their access to affordable health care. It’s hard to overstate the importance of this victory. We will continue fighting for increased access to affordable care.”


Wisconsin AG Josh Kaul


“Millions of Americans will keep their health insurance coverage. Protections for people with a preexisting condition will remain in place. The guarantee that young adults can stay on a parent’s coverage until they’re 26 will continue.”


“We’ll never know how this case would have come out if the 2018 elections had gone differently. What we do know is that voters in Wisconsin and elsewhere sent a clear message in 2018, and now the Supreme Court has upheld the ACA. To everyone who organized, volunteered, or voted in 2018, thank you.”