Originally posted on June 29, 2020
Ever since Trump has been in office, one of his main goals has been to undo everything his predecessor did, regardless if it was beneficial to the citizens or not. One of his principle targets has been Obamacare, also know as the Affordable Care Act. His first attempt to undo the entire act was derailed by John McCain. Never one to moderate his spite, Trump is now trying again. This time he isn’t going through Congress directly, but rather through the courts.
As part of the Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017 the Republican-controlled congress slipped in a section that repealed the “mandate” that provided a penalty if younger/healthier people didn’t went uninsured. The theory behind the mandate in the first place was that many younger/healthier people would forego health insurance entirely, thus driving the cost up for those who were older/unhealthy. So it was a measure that spread the risk of medical expenses over a larger part of the population – kinda like what insurance should do.
With the mandate now gone, Trump’s administration is arguing that the entire ACA should be declared void by the courts. If the court agrees about 20 million people will lose their insurance, and this right in the middle of a pandemic. Along with the loss of insurance will come the loss of protection for those with pre-existing conditions – likely including things like having tested positive for the coronavirus.
And how has Trump himself responded? A couple of tweets:
The Republicans have been talking about replacing the ACA since 2010 when Obama signed it into law, always promising something bigger, better and cheaper. Trump has been promising the same since he started campaigning in 2016. So far nothing, absolutely nothing, has appeared to make this promise believable. The Washington Post Fact Checker has a nice analysis.