Nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court Threatens the Health Care and Pre-Existing Condition Protections of Millions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

September 26, 2020 

Contact: Kathy Melley, (617) 791-0708 

(BOSTON, MA) -- President Trump today nominated Judge Amy Coney Barrett to fill the Supreme Court vacancy created by the recent passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, putting the health care and pre-existing condition protections of millions of people across the country in grave danger. Judge Coney Barrett has a history of opposing the Affordable Care Act. The president and Senate Republicans are rushing to ram through her confirmation before the November election. If they are successful, Judge Coney Barrett could be seated in time to participate in oral arguments in the Health Care Repeal Lawsuit (California v. Texas) the Trump administration is backing to invalidate the Affordable Care Act. The stakes of this nomination could not be higher.  

Statement of Emily Stewart, executive director of Community Catalyst, in response to the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court: 

“With just weeks until the 2020 election, the Trump administration and Senate Republicans are rushing to confirm a conservative Supreme Court pick, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, who shares their aim of ending the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the health and economic security it provides to millions of people across the country. Judge Coney Barrett’s nomination also threatens people’s ability to make decisions about their bodies and lives, putting Roe v Wade and reproductive rights at risk.  There is no question that Judge Coney Barrett’s nomination undermines efforts to advance equity in all areas of our society.  

Unlike  Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who was a fierce advocate for access to equitable health care and voted twice to uphold the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act), Judge Coney Barrett’s record and writings indicate that she is hostile to the ACA. Her appointment to the high court would give the president and congressional Republicans the vote they are looking for to terminate the law. This would spell disaster for the tens of millions of people across America who would be stripped of the health coverage and pre-existing condition protections they count on for their overall health and well-being. It is unconscionable that President Trump and Senate Republicans are rushing a Supreme Court nominee who is opposed to the ACA, and shocking they are doing it in the middle of a pandemic.  

This is the most consequential Supreme Court pick in decades, and once again, President Trump and congressional Republicans are showing that they are out of step with what people in our country want and need in a justice – someone who will protect our access to health care, affirm our freedom to control our own bodies, and advance civil rights for all people. Amy Coney Barrett is not that nominee.  

“We urge members of the Senate to reject this nomination.”  

BACKGROUND:

If a remade Trump court strikes down the ACA, the impact would be harsh and swift for people across the U.S., particularly people of color who have too long faced unfair and discriminatory barriers to health care. More than 23 million people would lose health coverage outright, including 15 million people who have gained coverage thanks to the ACA’s Medicaid expansion. Key protections will be stripped away from 135 million people who have pre-existing conditions like diabetes, cancer and asthma, and including people who have recently been infected with COVID-19. Important protections for people who access reproductive health services, as well as anti-discrimination protections for members of the LGBTQ+ community, particularly transgender individuals, would be rolled back. People will no longer be able to access birth control with no co-pays. 

In addition to expanding access to health coverage and strengthening consumer protections, the ACA has resulted in the largest reduction in health inequities for communities of color since the creation of Medicaid in 1965. From his first day in office, President Trump and his allies in Congress have worked to reverse those gains. But the nomination of Judge Coney Barrett to the high court poses the biggest threat yet to the law. 

Judge Amy Coney Barrett has a long history of anti-ACA and anti-choice legal stances, including her openness to the argument that the ACA is unconstitutional. She has also repeatedly expressed views on reproductive rights that would take us backward in the fight to protect abortion access and contraceptive coverage.  

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About Community Catalyst: 
Community Catalyst is a national, non-profit consumer advocacy organization founded in 1998 with the belief that affordable quality health care should be accessible to everyone. We work to ensure consumer interests are represented wherever important decisions about health and the health system are made: in communities, courtrooms, statehouses and on Capitol Hill.For more information, visit www.communitycatalyst.org. Follow us on Twitter @Healthpolicyhub

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