In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the Donald Trump administration asked the Supreme Court on Thursday night to overturn the U.S. health law, better known as “Obamacare”.
The High Court, which has twice ruled in favor of “Obamacare” in the past, is now considering a case brought by some 20 states in the hands of Republicans who argue that the law is unconstitutional following legislative changes in 2017.
In December 2018, a federal judge in Texas agreed with them by declaring the reform unconstitutional and opening a legal case that is now in the hands of the Supreme Court with states in the hands of the Democrats, who are defending it.
This judge and also an appeals court immediately below the Supreme Court considered that, after the approval of the tax reform, which eliminated the fines on the obligation to have health insurance, known as “individual mandate”, “Obamacare” became unconstitutional.
The Executive headed by Donald Trump resigned from the defense of the law in this case, in an unusual decision, and has now taken a further step in aligning itself with the drivers of the lawsuit.
A White House spokesman, Judd Deere, said in a statement that “a global pandemic does not change what Americans know: ‘Obamacare’ has been an illegal failure.
The truth is that the pandemic has made millions dependent on public health coverage because of the massive job destruction it has caused in the United States, where policies are associated with the employer.
In addition, the United States is the world’s hardest hit country by COVID-19 with more than 2,420,000 confirmed cases and 124,000 deaths.
The new Supreme Court decision on “Obamacare” probably won’t come until 2021, after the next presidential election.
Trump had promised on the campaign trail to dismantle “Obamacare” with the slogan “repeal and replace,” but his attempts failed in Congress after a dramatic vote in which the late Republican Senator John McCain supported Obama’s law, the former president’s most cherished legacy.
The High Court has already ruled twice in favour of “Obamacare”, in 2012 by 5 votes to 4, and in 2015 by 6 votes to 3.
On both occasions, conservative judge John Roberts voted with the four progressives to tip the balance of the court.
In the 2015 case, Conservative Anthony Kennedy, recently replaced by Brett Kavanaugh, also voted for “Obamacare”.