Pelosi: ‘If You Have a Preexisting Medical Condition, That Benefit Will Be Gone'

By Susan Jones | September 28, 2020 | 6:14am EDT
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) (Photo by Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images)
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) (Photo by Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images)

( - The U.S. Supreme Court on Nov. 10 will hear arguments in a case challenging the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act.

A decision isn't expected until next June, but on Sunday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said she knows how the court will rule with Amy Coney Barrett on the bench:

"What I am concerned about is anyone that President Trump would have appointed was there to undo the Affordable Care Act," Pelosi told CNN's "State of the Union" with Jake Tapper:

That is why he was in such a hurry, so he could have someone in place for the oral arguments which begin November 10the. And it doesn't matter what the process is here. What matters is what it means personally to the American people.

If you have a preexisting medical condition, that benefit will be gone. If you are a woman, we'll be back to a time where being a women is a preexisting medical condition. If your children are on your policy, say, your adult children are on your policy, no longer will they be, and that in a time of a pandemic.

And if you have seniors in your family who are having long-term care paid for by Medicaid, they're going to be pretty soon moving back home and living with you. That may be a wonderful experience, but it isn't -- you should have a choice. And that's not what this is about.

So, I'm not -- it's up to the Senate to make that judgment and to have those -- that (confirmation) process. I don't -- I think it's -- I don't know -- whoever he appointed was going to be there to overturn the Affordable Care Act.

But be hopeful. People have to be hopeful. This is unfortunate that the president would be so disrespectful and rush into this. But, nonetheless, that's what it is. But vote. The antidote to his -- whatever he does is to vote, vote, vote.  Vote for affordable care, vote for your pre-existing condition, vote for your safety, and vote for your health.

Pelosi dismissed Tapper's question about Judge Barrett's Catholic faith:

It doesn't matter what her faith is or what religion she believes in. What matters is, does she believe in the Constitution of the United States? Does she believe in the precedent on the Supreme Court that has upheld the Affordable Care Act?

This is, again, directly related to a major concern of the American people, as it was in 2018, health care, health care, health care -- the three most important issues in this election, even more so than in '18, because of the pandemic, which the president has failed to address and caused over -- some of the over 200,000 deaths, nearly seven million infected. I think it's over seven million now infected.

So, understand the power of people and their connection to their health care, to their children's health care, to their senior's health care, and the rest.

We have a -- Republicans in Congress don't believe in a public role. They think Medicare should wither on the vine. That is their statement -- Medicare should wither on the vine.

The case against Obamacare -- Texas vs. California -- was brought by a group of states and two private citizens in 2017, two months after Congress voted to reduce to zero the "tax" imposed on those who do not maintain health care coverage, as the law requires.

Sixteen States and the District of Columbia intervened to defend the Affordable Care Act.

There are three questions before the Supreme Court:

1. Whether the individual and state plaintiffs in this case have standing to challenge the law's constitutionality;

2. Whether reducing the individual mandate tax to zero rendered the minimum coverage requirement unconstitutional.

3. If so, whether the minimum coverage requirement is severable from the rest of the Affordable Care Act.

As a reminder, Congress passed Obamacare in 2010 to increase the number of Americans will "affordable" health insurance.

A key provision of the law was the individual mandate -- a requirement that Americans maintain "minimum essential" health insurance coverage.

Beginning in 2014, those who did not comply with the mandate were required to make a "shared responsibility payment” to the Internal Revenue Service.

In June 2012, Chief Justice John Roberts upheld the individual mandate, upon which the law rests, as "within Congress's power under the Taxing Clause."

But now that Trump and his fellow Republicans have wiped out the individual mandate by setting the "tax" at zero for those who do not maintain health insurance, the law's minimum coverage provision effectively is unenforceable.

Also See:
Trump: 'Obamacare Is Terrible'; 'We're Going to Have a Much Better Plan'

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