Trump administration urges Supreme Court to end Obamacare amid pandemic

Many Americans who’ve lost their jobs during the pandemic have signed up for Obamacare. However, the Trump administration wants to end that health care law. Photo by Pixabay.

The Trump administration filed a legal brief with the Supreme Court on Thursday night, arguing that Obamacare should be tossed out. Meanwhile, millions of newly unemployed Americans have signed up for it. Enrollments are up nearly 50% this year. 

What is the administration's rationale for ending the Affordable Care Act? 

Sheryl Gay Stolberg, Congressional Correspondent for the New York Times, explains: “The argument is that when Congress in 2017 zeroed out the tax penalty, the so-called individual mandate that required Americans to buy insurance or face a tax, that Congress rendered the law unconstitutional because it could no longer be justified under Congress’ taxing power.”

She adds that it’s important to remember that Republicans have aimed to repeal Obamacare since the law was enacted, and President Trump campaigned on this. “They weren’t able to get the repeal bill through the Senate, so they’re trying it in the courts,” she says. 

Polls show that national opinion over the law is divided, says Stolberg. She explains that a slight majority of Americans approve the law, and it breaks along party lines, with Democrats in favor and Republicans being against.

Credits

Guest:
Sheryl Gay Stolberg - health policy reporter at the New York Times - @SherylNYT

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney, Michell Eloy, Rosalie Atkinson, Brian Hardzinski, Angie Perrin, Caleigh Wells