The Trump administration is attempting to seize on a week of good political capital following special counsel Robert Mueller’s report findings by concurring with a federal judge’s determination that the framework of Obamacare is unconstitutional.
“The Department of Justice has determined that the district court’s judgment should be affirmed,” Trump’s Department of Justice wrote on the ruling, adding that the government “is not urging that any portion of the district court’s judgment be reversed.”
The Texas judge’s ruling is sure to be appealed all the way to the Supreme Court, where, if upheld, it would upend the nation’s health care system. Trump campaigned heavily on a pledge to repeal and replace Obamacare, even leading a charge in the first six months of his presidential term to overturn the healthcare framework. (RELATED: Here’s How Trump Silently Gutted Obama’s Legacy)
The Republican Party will become “The Party of Healthcare!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 26, 2019
Republican attempts to use its united government were stymied by the late Sen. John McCain’s vote against the legislation, essentially ending all further attempts. Trump did succeed in removing the Obamacare “individual mandate” in his tax reform legislation, which penalized citizens for not having healthcare.
An official familiar with the administration’s actions pointed to Trump’s repeated campaign pledge to repeal and replace the Obamacare framework, as well as the president’s previous tweet celebrating the decision.
The official said that the DOJ concurrence was meant, in part, to accelerate talks with Democratic lawmakers over potential fixes to the healthcare system and eventual negotiations on prescription drug prices.
Wow, but not surprisingly, ObamaCare was just ruled UNCONSTITUTIONAL by a highly respected judge in Texas. Great news for America!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 15, 2018
Another official uninvolved in the decision was baffled by the DOJ concurrence, noting that repealing Obamacare without a viable replacement would a political boon to Democrats running against Trump in 2020. The official also wondered why the DOJ would pursue such a controversial course of action while the administration is basking in the glow of the special counsel’s findings.
Democrats were quick to react to the administration’s Obamacare decision with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi declaring, “Democrats will continue to fight relentlessly to protect people with pre-existing conditions and to deliver lower health costs and prescription drug prices for every American.”
Tonight in federal court, the Trump Admin declared all out war on affordable, dependable health care. In the courts, in the Congress, all across America, Democrats will fight relentlessly to #ProtectOurCare! https://t.co/WLZl5X9GGr
— Nancy Pelosi (@SpeakerPelosi) March 26, 2019