WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV), a member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education Labor & Pensions, helped introduce Senator Mazie Hirono’s (D-HI) Resolution to Defend the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The Resolution would provide the sense of the Senate that the Justice Department should reverse its policy of refusing to defend the constitutionality of the ACA, including the law’s coverage protections for those with pre-existing conditions, in Texas vs. United States. Rosen and her colleagues filed the resolution following the Senate’s confirmation of William Barr as attorney general. During his confirmation hearing, Barr refused to commit to upholding the constitutionality of the ACA.
“The protections provided under the Affordable Care Act are critical to ensuring access to health insurance coverage for countless Nevadans and Americans across our nation,” said Senator Rosen. “I will not stand by and watch our health care system be dismantled by this Administration. This resolution expresses the sense of the Senate that the Department of Justice should protect individuals with pre-existing conditions and calls on the Attorney General to reverse his position by defending the ACA in Texas v. United States. Protecting our nation’s health care law remains a top priority of mine and I will not stop until Nevada’s hardworking families can rest assured of their continued access to health care.”
BACKGROUND: One of the first actions Rosen took as Senator was introducing a resolution with Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) to defend protections for those with pre-existing conditions. Rosen’s Senate resolution would authorize the Senate Legal Counsel to intervene in Texas vs. United States – a pending lawsuit in federal court, on behalf of the U.S. Senate, in order to defend the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act’s coverage protections for people with pre-existing conditions. Last Congress, Rosen led this same legislation when she was in the House. Earlier this year, the House passed legislation that included core provisions from Rosen’s resolution to defend the constitutionality of the ACA and its pre-existing conditions protections. In the House, Rosen’s resolution was co-sponsored by the Ranking Members of all House committees of jurisdiction in addition to Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer. The resolution had nearly 190 co-sponsors by the end of the 115th Congress. According to the Center for American Progress, 1.2 million Nevadans have a pre-existing condition.