Newsone reports that as Donald Trump continues to try and chip away at the foundations that allow Obamacare to function, several major cities, Chicago, Columbus, Cincinnati, and Baltimore have come together to file a lawsuit against the administration over what is called “waging a relentless campaign to sabotage and, ultimately, to nullify.”
The lawsuit, filed in a Maryland court, comes following a Wednesday decision by the Department of Health and Human Services to allow people to keep short-term health insurance plans for up to three years. This means that more and more people are leaving the ACA marketplace, resulting in larger premiums. The lawsuit alleges that the administration is “deliberately trying to make the Act fail,” and Trump certainly isn’t making it difficult to prove.
“If we don’t get it done” in Congress, President Trump has said, “we are going to watch Obamacare go down the tubes, and we’ll blame the Democrats . . . [a]nd at some point, they are going to come and say, ‘You’ve got to help us.’” “[W]e are getting rid of Obamacare,” President Trump has boasted, “essentially, we have gotten rid of it,” “[i]t’s dead[,] [i]t’s essentially dead,” “there is no Obamacare, it’s dead.” According to city officials, the rising costs associated with these attacks and changes mean that cities are having to spend more on “uncompensated care” for their residents. The cities demand that the administration fully fund ACA advertising, lengthen healthcare enrollment periods and enforce individual mandates.
This doesn’t mark the first time that states have fought back against attacks on Obamacare. In 2017, 18 states filed a lawsuit over Trump’s attempt to block federal cost-sharing subsidies that help make health insurance affordable for low- and middle-income individuals. That was dismissed last month. 12 states filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration’s efforts to expand association health plans last week.
However, Abbe Gluck, a Yale University law professor, explains that there is a uniqueness to this particular lawsuit. “No scholar or court has ever said the president can use his discretion to implement a statute to purposely destroy it,” Gluck told NBC News. “If there’s ever going to be a violation of the ‘take care’ clause, this is it.”