Democrats Lay Out The Stakes: Health Care For Millions Is On The Line With Trump’s SCOTUS Nominee
October 12, 2020
At today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Senate Democrats uniformly laid out the high stakes in Trump’s Supreme Court nomination. Simply put, if he succeeds in rushing through this confirmation process, Amy Coney Barrett would vote to overturn the Affordable Care Act and jeopardize the health care of tens of millions of Americans in the middle of a pandemic.
Democrats laid out how health care for 20 million Americans and protections for as many as 133 million with preexisting conditions is at stake with this nomination.
Senator Feinstein: “The stakes are extraordinarily high for the American people. … Most importantly, health care coverage for millions of Americans is at stake with this nomination. … The president has promised to appoint justices who will vote to dismantle [the ACA].”
Senator Klobuchar: “With one stroke of a pen, one judge can decide if millions of Americans, including their family, would lose their insurance. One judge can decide if millions of Americans can lose their right to keep their kids on their insurance until they’re 26 years old. One judge can decide that if seniors’ prescription drugs, which already are too high, could soar even higher.”
Senator Hirono: “It’s personal to me too, because I know that having health insurance and access to health care saved my life. … It would bankrupt almost every family in this country if they didn’t have health insurance. I’m not special or unique. Serious illness can hit anyone unexpectedly.”
Senator Booker: “[A future without the ACA] looks like 130 million Americans with preexisting conditions, from cancer survivors to people with disabilities, being charged more or denied coverage completely. It looks like 20 million Americans losing their access to potentially life-saving care in the middle of a pandemic that’s already killed over 214,000 Americans.”
Democrats made clear that Trump is trying to overturn the Affordable Care Act through the Supreme Court and said he’d only appoint justices that would do just that.
Senator Durbin: “[Trump] made it clear that he wants his Supreme Court and this nominee to join him in eliminating the Affordable Care Act. This is his litmus test.”
Senator Coons: “Trump has promised over and over and over again that he would repeal the Affordable Care Act. He ran on that promise, but despite his very best efforts, he’s failed. My Republican colleagues here and in the House have voted over and over and over to repeal the Affordable Care Act since it was passed a decade ago, but thankfully for the people of our nation and my state, they too have been unsuccessful. And yet today, to make good on this promise, to achieve what they could not accomplish through the democratic process, they’re looking to the courts. In fact, to the court. They’re looking to this nominee.”
Democrats demonstrated how Amy Coney Barrett’s record makes clear that she would vote to overturn the Affordable Care Act.
Senator Whitehouse: “This Supreme Court nominee has signaled in the judicial equivalent of all caps that she believes the Affordable Care Act must go and that the precedent protecting the ACA doesn’t matter.”
Senator Blumenthal: “Judge Barrett, in all honesty, you have auditioned for this job … You’ve stated twice in effect that you would have voted to strike down the Affordable Care Act.”
Democrats highlighted how Republicans prioritized rushing through a SCOTUS nomination over delivering COVID relief to the American people.
Senator Harris: “Senate Republicans have made it crystal clear that rushing a Supreme Court nomination is more important than helping and supporting the American people who are suffering from a deadly pandemic and a devastating economic crisis.”
Senator Leahy: “Instead of talking about COVID and doing something to help the American people, we’re engaged in this mad rush to fill a Supreme Court vacancy on the eve of a presidential election.”