California Attorney General Xavier Becerra today led a coalition of 16 Attorneys General opposing a motion by the state of Texas and 18 other states in Texas et al. v. United States et al. seeking to halt operation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) nationwide. The Texas-led lawsuit would end the ACA, threatening healthcare coverage for 20 million Americans – including nearly five million in California – and divert billions of dollars in funding for critical healthcare programs and services nationwide. With his filing today, Attorney General Becerra continues his defense of the ACA.
“The lawsuit initiated by Texas is dangerous and reckless and would destroy the ACA as we know it. It would leave millions of Americans without access to affordable, quality healthcare. It is irresponsible and puts politics ahead of working families,” said Attorney General Becerra. “We won’t sit back as Texas and others try yet again to dismantle our healthcare system. Our coalition of states and partners across the country will fight any effort to strip families of their health insurance.”
The Texas lawsuit alleges that the individual mandate under the ACA is not constitutional. Attorney General Becerra’s coalition refutes this claim, noting that the ACA and its individual mandate have already survived review by the United States Supreme Court twice and over 70 unsuccessful repeal attempts in Congress, including the latest attempt in the Republican tax bill.
If successful, Texas’ preliminary injunction would harm millions of Americans by:
- Stopping Medicaid expansion;
- Ending tax credits that help working families afford insurance;
- Allowing insurance companies to deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions;
- Taking away seniors’ prescription drug discounts; and
- Stripping funding from our nation’s public health system, including work to combat the opioid epidemic.
If the lawsuit is successful and the ACA were terminated, the state of California would lose over $160 billion in healthcare funding. In total, Americans living in the states that successfully intervened could lose half a trillion dollars in healthcare funding.
On February 28, 2018, Texas filed the lawsuit to dismantle the ACA in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Fort Worth Division and was joined by 19 other states. On April 9, 2018, Attorney General Becerra and 16 Attorneys General sought to intervene in the federal lawsuit to vigorously defend the ACA and the millions of families across the country who rely on it for affordable care. The motion to intervene was granted on May 16, 2018, and Attorney General Becerra’s coalition is now fighting for the ACA and opposing Texas’ attempt to derail it.
Joining Attorney General Becerra in today’s action are the Attorneys General of Connecticut, Delaware, Hawai’i, Illinois, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota by and through its Department of Commerce, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and the District of Columbia.
This article was released by the Office of the California Attorney General.